The confidence level in the Australian Capital Territory's property industry has been improving gradually, hitting the highest level across the country, according to the latest report from ANZ and the Property Council.
The confidence in ACT improved over the last quarter, but is still below the pre-COVID-19 levels. Adina Cirson, executive director for ACT at the Property Council, said this demonstrates that the outbreak continues to impact all industry sectors significantly.
"The last few months have been a challenge for all sectors across the property industry. Managing this crisis has been tough for all businesses, so it is good to see that there has been an uplift in sentiment and see that there is a positive light in this," she said.
Hotels and tourism were hit the hardest, followed by retail and commercial office sectors. However, there was an improvement in the expectations for forward work and staffing levels for the next 12 months.
"These results highlight the absolutely critical nature of our work with the ACT Government to keep construction going and to keep those who are working in the property and construction industries in a job," Cirson said.
Cirson said that the property industry is going to be crucial in the post-COVID-19 recovery phase. This makes it necessary for the territory to have a solid pipeline of construction projects.
To ensure that this happens, Cirson said there is a need for further stimulus measures to incentivise development and improve purchaser inquiries.
"Survey participants reported having greater confidence in the ACT government's ability to plan and manage growth than the last quarter, but cites the top critical issues for the government to stimulate growth are addressing property taxes and charges, planning and regulation, housing supply and affordability and development around transport corridors," she said.