Civil Building Construction and Management
60 Thompson is a Brisbane based construction and remedial services company operating since 1998. Founded in Queensland the company has managed project throughout the entire East Coast. From residential home design and building through to shopping centres and hotel construction and reburbishments, Backed by a strong management team with over 75 years combined experience. Since 2011 the core business activities are focused around remedial services for property developers for homes and commercial buildings. These services include all property maintenance including structural repairs on damaged buildings and roofing systems. A recent project included a complete restoration of a high rise in Brisbane city including building two new floors and a complete re roof of the structure. The project took approximately four months to complete and was made within the 12 million dollar budget. Upon final inspection of the building and work undertaken a further contract has been awarded to renovate an iconic landmark in Brisbane. The new project will take 6 months to complete and includes a complete refurbishment of the interior and exterior including the painting the outer facades, new guttering, architectural metal roofing, window replacements and skylights.
High Property Turnover Results In Win For Building Inspectors
Demand In The Building Inspection Sector
The latest report released by industry analysts BIS Shrapnel reveal that the Brisbane property market is the most lucrative in Australia. The June 2014 report, dubbed Residential Property Prospects, shows that Brisbane’s median property price has risen by 8% since January. It now stands at $475,000 which is almost 10% higher than in June 2013. According to BIS Shrapnel’s projections, this trend is set to continue, with an estimated 17% growth expected in the next three years. (Source: News.com.au – Read Article)
These sentiments are also echoed in The National Australia Bank’s June Quarter Australian Residential Property Survey. The survey report, which was released on 10th July, 2014 reveals that the Brisbane residential market is set to have the fastest price growth in Australia, within the next one year.
The increasingly high prices are being attributed to increased activity from local buyers in the housing market. There had been a steady decline in local investors since property prices peaked in 2010. This led to a fall in property prices from its peak in 2010 to its lowest point June 2013. Around June 2013, local investors seem to realize that the prices had bottomed out. And they began returning, and spending. Their spending is leading to housing price increases, and ultimately, more impressive turnover results for the property industry.
The Silent Heroes
The high turnover rates are resulting in increased demand of Building Inspection services. The Building Inspection Industry is one of the least well known, yet most vital parts of the property market. Building inspectors are the silent heroes in every property deal. No deal goes down without their participation. And at any stage during the transaction process, one word from them can send the deal sideways.
The Building Inspection Industry is responsible for ensuring that the safety of buildings is up to standard. Building inspectors are the ones entrusted with the delicate task of ensuring that a building is fit for human use. They check for presence of indicators which can compromise the safety or structural integrity of a building.
What They Inspect
Among the things which building inspectors look out for in a building are:
- Wood Borers
- Timber decay
- Water penetration through walls
- Subsidence of walls or ceilings
- The structural integrity of a building
The presence of any of these things shows that a building is unfit for human habitation. As such, it is in the interest of buyers, sellers, contractors and property managers that none of them exists. And it is the role of building inspectors to carry out thorough checks in order to ensure that none of them exists. Therefore, they are hired during different stages from a post construction or renovation phase to a sales or purchasing phase.
A typical property inspector provides a range of services, including:
- Pest Inspection – checking for the presence of pests like termites and borers
- Handover Inspection – after the completion of construction or renovation
- Pre-Sale Inspection – on behalf of the seller
- Pre-Purchase Inspection – on behalf of a potential buyer
- Pre-Settlement Inspection – on behalf of both the buyer and seller
The pre-settlement inspection is carried out to ensure that both the buyer and seller agree on the condition of the building. This is to eliminate the scenario where different inspectors hired by each party deliver contradictory assessments – a condition which can later lead to unwanted legal complexities.
How They Do It
The way a building inspection is carried out is determined by a number of factors. The most common ones are the size of the building, the purpose of the inspection, the parameters set by the client and the personal style of the inspector. However, irrespective of how it is carried out, the client is usually given a written report detailing the findings of the inspection.
It is also quite rare that a company which offers building inspection services also offers correctional services for any problems found. Most of them just carry out the inspection, and submit their findings. In some cases, they can direct a client to a reputable company which can offer fixes for any problems found.
Scott Mcpherson, who manages Pro Inspections Brisbane, a local Building and Pest Inspection company, commented “Basically, building inspectors play the critical role of verifying the safety and habitability of buildings. As such, they are an important part any building or property purchase transaction. This is the reason why Brisbane’s high property turnover is resulting increased demand for building inspection services.”
Brisbane’s high property turnover is perhaps best epitomized by the June 2014 sale of a high-end property at Fig Tree Pocket. The elegant house sold for $8.25 million in just 20 days. This made it the most expensive property sold in Brisbane since 2011. And, although it attracted interest from as far as China and the UK, the property was bought by a local Australian family. Basically, this deal is the perfect illustration that locals are buying, and turnover is increasing. And, ultimately, the demand for the Building Inspection Industry is also on the rise. Based on reports the market will experience steady growth over the coming years which will benefit investors and local businesses servicing the industry.
Roofing Contractors & Construction Workers
Recent Studies show outdoor workers and roofing contractors are in high risk areas.
Australia has one of the highest cases of skin cancer in the world. According to statistics, 2 out of 3 Australians will develop a form of skin cancer before they reach 70 years old. Within Australia, 2,000 die from skin cancer each year, and 2,000 are being treated for it daily. Outdoor workers, especially roofing contractors as they work in unprotected areas with direct sunlight, receive 5 to 10 times the amount of Ultraviolet (UV) radiation compared to the average citizen. This means that a roofing contractor’s risk of developing cancer is monstrously higher compared to the average Australian.
A recent study done by Cancer Council Queensland, Curtin University and Queensland University Of Technology shows that people who work in the public sectors, farming and construction industry believe that they will develop skin cancer in the future. However, the numbers could be higher for industries such as roofing as they are among the most sun-exposed workers without any protection.
Skin Cancer Belief
Cancer statistics show that Australia, especially Queensland, has among the highest occurrence of skin cancer in the world. The threat is even greater for roofing contractors who toil all day working in the sun. What is even more disturbing is that at least 70% of the contractors believe that they will develop skin cancer in the future. Almost half of the number believes they already have skin cancer. Some have even had moles or spots removed out of such belief.
There Is A Need For Policies
The number of building industry contractors believe the statistics are shocking to say the least. It’s a pragmatic view and it needs to be addressed as soon as possible. “This means that there is a need for a follow up on our workers not only for the mental health, but for actually making the workplace a safer place” quoted Trevor Bransden from Pro Build Roofing Brisbane.
Burden Of Responsibility
- Policy Makers
- Individual Contractors
- Company Enforcement
There are policies set in place to protect the roofing contractors and construction personal. However, according to a study, nearly half of those policies are not enforced. The burden of responsibility for making each contractor safe lies in the protection of policy makers, individual workers and the workplace employers. Policies like readily available sunscreen, wearing of protective clothing and enough shade is important for the safety of the workers. Also, contractors need to be educated that they have a responsibility becoming “sun smart”. Lastly, each workplace should also be responsible enough to enforce these policies. “This is very important as the research shows that only half of the roofing contractors have sun protection workplace policies, and only half of those enforce those policies” added Mr Bransden.
Importance Of Sunscreen
When it comes to protecting tradesman from the sun, policies should be set to cover as most grounds, or skin, as possible. Among the primary line of defense is putting on a sunscreen lotion. There is a belief that tradespeople have little care about lotions as it is a “woman thing”. This might be true at some point and, hopefully, in the future it won’t be. According to a non-scientific research, after educating a small group of contractors, the sunscreen lotions placed at the workplace are being snatched-up and there is a demand for more. The older workers were the first adopters as they have seen the evidence and heard some stories about skin cancer. To make the workplace safer for contractors, a policy should be set that sunscreen should be readily available and education in the roofing industry and other at risk workers should be mandatory.
Providing enough shade for roofing constructors is another good way of protecting them from the sun. However, providing shade may be difficult, especially if the work involves high and wide spaces. Nevertheless, a policy should be set that enough shade should be provided in any way possible and as much as possible.
Another issue that needs to be dealt is sun exposure times. Australia receives one of the highest amounts of UV radiation. It is suggested that tradesman should limit to their exposure to UV peak times of the day. It’s been said that 10 minutes exposure limit during peak times is strongly suggested. For the summer months where UV radiation is at the highest in a year, 3 minutes exposure limit is also strongly suggested.
- Long Sleeves
- Wraparound Glasses
- Cloth Neck Covers
- Wide Brimmed Hats
Another line of defense that proves to significantly reduce the risk of skin cancer is clothing protection. The most important thing is that the men are wearing adequate protective clothing while working under the sun. For example, long sleeves and wraparound sunglasses should be a must. There is a newly designed cloth flap, which can be secured to a hard hat or a cap, that serves to cover and protect the back and shoulders is also strongly suggested.
Companies At The Sun Protection Forefront
According to Mr Bransden, “I have learned about the skin cancer issue from the office in the past. While I know that sun exposure is really an issue here in Australia, but what shocked me is the high percentage of workers believing that they will get skin cancer in the future or think they already have one. This is a cause for concern as quality work can only be achieved if the contractors put 100% of their efforts to their work and that includes physical and mental effort. We never neglected this issue and placed it as one of our priorities. Now, we have company policies to ensure that our workers are only receiving safe amounts of sunlight. This is not an effort just to show that we care about our employees, it is also an effort to reduce future medical expenses that might be shouldered by the company. Its a win-win situation for our company and our workers”.
Skin Cancer is a real threat for both the roofing trade and other construction and building industries as they receive 5 to 10 times the amount of UV radiation compared to the average Australian. This must be addressed for the safety of everyone involved. Policy makers, individuals and companies should set policies or make an effort to reduce the risk of skin cancer. Policies like mandatory sunscreen application and education, shade protection, exposure limit and protective clothing must be introduced. Recognition of companies at the forefront of sun protection, should be publicly recognized as this can motivate other companies to do the same.
For more information and advice on sun protection for roofing and construction workers you can visit http://www.sunsmart.com.au/
Demand For Building In Brisbane Music To The Ears Of Construction Companies
While Brisbane has been seen as an under performing real estate market for several years, research predicts that property prices will hit an all-time high towards the end of the year (2014). Brisbane’s building industry booming means new opportunity for property developers to take their trade to a whole new level.
Property Market Increase Continues
News about Brisbane’s building industry booming trends is spreading like wildfire. Data from a number of property market researchers shows that overall property market in this city has grown in epic proportions and will continue to do so throughout 2014 and 2015. This has seen a number of property investors rush to the relatively under-valued city to take advantage of highly competitive prices.
Luxury apartments claim a lion’s share of this market
According to research firm Colliers International, the first quarter of 2014 saw a surge in luxury apartments in inner-Brisbane. Of the 591 new house sales examined across 47 projects, the research firm confirmed that 25% were luxury apartments.
Prices have risen dramatically
Meanwhile analysts from social and economic market research firm Urbis anticipate that at least 45 new mega-projects will be ready for sale by December this year. The research firm also reported that the average weighted price per apartment has risen dramatically from $128,000 early last year to $665,000 in 2014.
Here are the average national dwelling values for different cities across Australia.
- Darwin – 3.3%
- Brisbane – 2.9%
- Melbourne – 2.3%
- Canberra – 2.2%
(Source: Allan Wargent
Brisbane is defying historical trends
Historically, property prices in Australia do not follow a uniform pattern. That is why you find that some cities tend to outperform others at any given time. Brisbane is currently viewed as the next property hub by a growing number of investors. Urbis associate director Jon Rivera says “The current property boom is revolutionizing the Brisbane market transforming it from an otherwise sleepy town.”
What could be the reason behind this?
Luke O’Dwyer, a property markets expert from Silverstone Developments attributes the strong growth of Brisbane’s property market to the fact that the city is the most affordable property hub as compared to other cities that lie in the East coast. People from as far as Melbourne and Sydney are moving into Brisbane because of its highly competitive property prices.
This phenomenal rise in activity by property investors should see demand of the homes that are currently listed for sale gather new momentum towards the last quarter of this year. This will in turn an upward pressure on property prices in line with the basic demand and supply rules of economics.
Allan Wargent Property Buyers firm has predicted the following growth in property prices in different cities:
- Canberra – 1% to -4%
- Perth – 0% to 3%
- Melbourne – 2% to 5%
- Brisbane – 2% to 5%
Why property investors are moving to Brisbane
Affordability is not the only reason behind the drastic increase in demand for property in Brisbane. One factor that has been linked to this boom is the insurgence of a large number of property investors from outside Queensland. Most of these developers have achieved significant capital gains in their investment of the past few years and now they have the financial muscle to buy a large number of homes in the relatively affordable areas of Brisbane.
Apartments in high demand
According to Andrew Roubicek, director of residential for research firm Colliers, apartments in the $750,000+ price range have always been in high demand. Apartments listed at a $900,000 range contributed to 17% of the total sales made. Further research findings from Colliers indicate that property prices in Brisbane have shot by more than 25% above the five year average.
Predicting 2015 and Beyond
Going forward, pressure for property ownership in this city is expected to reach fever-pitch. But as usual with most property market (historically), this pressure is expected to reduce towards the last quarter of 2015. The exponential demand for property in this region is expected to soften in 2016 as predicted by BIS Shrapnel research institution.
Opportunities for construction companies
Brisbane is about to take off and recent research findings point to a much stronger growth over time. Terry Ryder, a renowned property commentator is confident that this property market is only gathering momentum and we’re yet to see much more growth. Construction companies are being advised to invest in property that falls within a market price range of $700 to $1000 because this is the bracket where most demand falls.
The recent trend in demand for construction in Brisbane provides a fantastic opportunity for property developers to cast their nets wide. This also seems to be the perfect time to invest in this market.
Working with Brian and the team at 60 Thompson is always a rewarding experience. We look forward to the projects and experience his team brings to the table. With a reliable workforce and construction management experts our projects are always professional and deliver high quality results. I have high a admiration for his workforce and management skills.