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Building Blocks Blog

Welcome to Building Blocks, the Saw Constructions blog.

As part of our mission to transform the perception of the building industry, we'll be showcasing articles of interest, some of our proud project history and sharing our knowledge and expertise in property development, because your success is our business.

If you have any comments or questions about anything at all, please leave them here and someone from Team Saw will be sure to answer them.
  • More townhouses are on the way to middle ring suburbs near you

    December 19, 2019

    A surge in approvals for townhouses and apartments across Melbourne’s middle-ring reveals more homebuyers are targeting blue chip suburbs for new options. 
    A Victoria Residential Development Index (from the Urban Development Institute of Australia) shows an almost 10% growth in approvals in Melbourne’s middle ring suburbs over 2017-2018.
    Topping the list were approvals for apartment buildings of 3 storeys or more, growing by 26% during the 2 year period. Approvals for semi-detached townhouses grew by almost 15%.

  • 'Fast Tracked' policy push brings more medium density homes to NSW

    January 31, 2019

    The growing need to service an ageing and also rapidly growing population has highlighted a need to increase our range of housing options. Called the ‘missing middle’, the Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code is helping to manage a changing society and the critical housing shortage.
    Low-rise medium density housing assists housing affordability by providing smaller homes, on smaller lots, but still providing all the amenities of a single dwelling. They can better accommodate a wide variety of lifestyles and needs, including growing families or empty nesters.

  • Developing the new trend: How townhouses are evolving across Melbourne

    November 23, 2018

    In the 80s and 90s townhouses were a fairly average, straightforward style of accommodation. They were usually bigger than apartments, but smaller than houses, they were often seen as a stepping stone before acquiring a bigger or more luxurious dwelling. But things have changed dramatically.
    Now, townhouses, or townhomes as some builders prefer to call them, are no longer playing second fiddle to the quarter acre block, and in fact many buyers prefer a townhouse to a free-standing home.

  • Melbourne property market cools - auction clearance rates drop across most suburbs.

    May 24, 2018

    Clearance rates have dropped sharply in many Melbourne suburbs in 208’s first quarter as the heated property market went down a gear. Analysis of 2018’s first three months shows the cool change is in, with suburbs as diverse as Chadstone, Balwyn, Berwick, Mont Albert, Sunshine West, Springvale and Altona getting a less than 50% sale at auction rate (Domain Group Data).
    The drop has been recorded across both established neighbourhoods and greenfield.
    In dozens more suburbs the clearance rate just managed to get over 50% as the hot market enjoyed by sellers for the last few years drops off.

  • NSW government puts planning on the right track with medium density housing approvals.

    April 18, 2018

    Victoria take note. New South Wales is leading the way in Australia with changes to the housing code that make medium-density housing types like terrace houses easier to build. The new code will take effect on July 6, 2018.
    The goal is to improve housing affordability plus produce more housing choices to meet a range of emerging needs. The changes will fast track complying development approval. The new Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code will allow medium density housing to be approved with a ‘complying development’ system. 

  • China is still a major player in the Australian Property Market.

    February 15, 2018

    Despite Beijing’s recent restrictions on offshore company investment China’s presence in Australia’s property market remains very strong, accounting for a third of national development sites.
    A recent study by Knight Frank exposed Chinese investment in Australia to the tune of $2.02 billion worth of development site sales, across 2017, with the average site measuring 21,785 sqm.

  • Melbourne has to choose a future: Spread like LA, or go up like Manhattan?

    January 15, 2018

    Without some seriously careful planning Melbourne is on track to lose its place as the one of world’s most liveable cities, according to a new report from Infrastructure Australia.

  • Urban Melbourne turns to Townhouses

    November 21, 2017

    The demand for townhouses in inner Melbourne is growing. The new category of buyer are higher earning professionals who want that particular location, but with the additional sense of security and privacy.

    The size of inner urban apartment blocks can make inhabitants feel like they are just one of many. High-rise blocks lack some elements of privacy and personality can get lost in the scale of the buildings. Not so with the townhouse. Built on a personal scale with a more limited number of dwellings, townhouses can offer better security, extra outside living space whether its courtyard or rooftop, and usually better parking facilities.

  • Townhouses preferred for Melbourne’s growth areas.

    October 09, 2017

    Reflecting an increasing shift in home buying preferences in Melbourne, townhouse construction approvals are increasing at a faster rate than houses in growth suburbs. 
    ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistic of Statistics) figures show there is a 26% increase in townhouse approvals over and above last years figure, for Melbourne’s growth areas. 1834 building approvals were made.
    However, in the same period house building approvals in the growth areas increased by only 6%, to 12,498.
    There are several reasons behind the increase in townhouses in the outer suburbs. Although medium density development is increasingly encouraged in Melbourne inner-city locations have more restrictions, which pushes many townhouse developments further out.

  • Apartment living starts to cool for Australians.

    September 18, 2017

    We had been led to believe that Australians were increasingly embracing apartment living as a means of securing a home closer to the city centre. Or are apartments just all that’s being built in some locations and are taken up because they are the only option on offer?
    Swelling population growth in Australia has produced a higher number of people living in apartments, growing from 1.33 million in 2011, to 1.39 million in 2016. But the actual overall proportion of apartment dwellers versus those in other dwelling types has proven to have not only stalled, but is actually shrinking.

  • Surge in supply of Medium Density Housing shows up in Census.

    August 15, 2017

    Analysis of the recently released 2016 Census, by property and data researchers CoreLogic, has identified a spike in denser housing stocks between 2011 and 2016, revealing a growing demand for medium density housing in particular.
    Because of the streetscape impact it’s often assumed high density units and apartments are the leading growth type in urban dwelling development. But the Census confirms it’s medium density housing that has surged more. 

  • Townhouse sales hit a bullseye in Melbourne.

    July 07, 2017

    Buyers wasted no time at the release of 23 new townhouses in Point Cook on May 13, producing a sell out within 48 hours. Of the 23 townhouses released for sale on the Saturday, 22 were sold that day and the only remaining property was snapped up on Sunday. Sales tallied $11.5 Million for the weekend.
    The release, ‘Collection 1’ at the CIRQ Point Cook project, delivered by the new Development Victoria group, is the first allocation out of a total of 104 new homes planned for the townhouse development.  

  • Prices shoot up for Melbourne house lots.

    June 06, 2017

    Entry level home buyers in Melbourne are facing another hurdle with a sudden spike of steep rises in lot values. It’s threatening Melbourne’s position as Australia’s most affordable capital city housing market and adding to first-home buyers affordability problems.  

  • The key to unlocking medium density housing supply in Melbourne.

    May 15, 2017

    Each week over 1,500 newcomers arrive in Melbourne wanting their own piece of the renowned ‘livable’ city. No wonder the pieces are becoming harder to get!
    Research tells us half all recent employment growth is within 10 kilometres of the CBD. But half the new population growth lives much further out - more than 20 kilometres. And this is cementing a divide in Melbourne’s quality of life. 

  • New planning blueprint calls for more development in Melbourne’s Middle Ring suburbs.

    April 03, 2017

    Changes to planning regulations means Melbourne’s prized middle ring suburbs will have to accept more development. The Andrew’s Government announcement on March 11 heralded radical changes for some neighbourhoods.

  • How the Government’s new housing affordability plan will affect developers.

    March 08, 2017

    On March 5 2017 the Victorian Government announced its new initiative ‘Homes for Victorians’. The measures are designed primarily to boost affordability for first home buyers. This article spotlights the main points from a developers’ point of view. 

  • Whats driving the demand for Melbourne townhouse development?

    January 10, 2017

    ​Across 2016 we saw the increasing popularity of townhouses develop into a full-on trend. The ramp in demand has been growing over several years because townhouses sit in a unique position between the traditional house and garden dwelling and apartment living. And it’s a position that’s becoming increasingly popular.

  • Why so many developers are rushing to the north.

    November 16, 2016

    ​Lack of available development land plus tougher rules for permits in the south east of Melbourne is generating a push to prime sites in the north. There has been a spike in buyer demand for boutique type projects in suburbs north of the CBD such as Coburg, Preston and Thornbury.

  • What You Need To Know About The Apartment Boom.

    October 19, 2016

    As the growth in the number of apartments expected to be completed along the eastern seaboard continues to increase and the talk of oversupply continues, what wider effects are being felt within the industry?

  • Overseas Investors Turn To Private Lenders For Finance

    September 12, 2016

    With lending regulations tightening, overseas investors are searching for more options to fund their development projects.

  • Why Off Market property buyers often get the best buys.

    August 10, 2016

    Profitable developments rely on very good planning and start by buying well. And we mean very well. One of the strategies for securing a buy at a good price is going off market.

  • Negative Gearing - Why It Works

    July 26, 2016

    Negative gearing has become a highly publicised political issue but the reasons for keeping continue to add up.

  • Proposed changes to Monash planning scheme

    April 21, 2016

    City of Monash is proposing important changes to planning rules, which may effect your development.
    This article outlines the initial proposed changes, including council’s modified position after community feedback.

  • What you need to know about foreign investment regulations for residential real estate

    February 22, 2016

    If you are a temporary resident or a foreign non-resident in Australia intending to buy an established residential dwelling, there are many opportunities for development, but there are regulations that apply which you will need to understand clearly before entering the market.

  • Early stage development tips that save your build time and money

    December 08, 2015

    Building projects are full of surprises, find out how having the right bulder involved from the earlier stages of design and planning can help you avoid many of the pitfalls.

  • How the new changes to property investment lending will affect you

    August 27, 2015

    Saw can assist you in understanding the pros and cons of the new changes or by directing you to other avenues of investment lending. If you’d like to know more then contact us today.

  • Planning levy and your next building project

    August 05, 2015

    By 2050 Melbourne will be Australia’s biggest city and the Metropolitan Planning Authority is planning ahead to meet the challenges this rapid growth will bring. A new Levy for developers has been introduced to help fund the kind of planning the metropolis will need. The key facts you need to know about the new Levy are listed here. 

  • Investment strategy helping your kids get into the property market

    July 11, 2015

    Getting a start on that first property is tough for first home buyers but there are some great strategies available that are keeping the dream alive.

  • Stamp Duty cuts brought forward - helping first home buyers into the market

    August 06, 2014

    The Victorian State Government’s first stage reduction of Stamp Duty added to the First Home Buyers Grant it’s a sensational opportunity to speed up home ownership.

  • Why Chinese investment is booming in Melbourne - and what you need to know

    June 27, 2014

    Property prices in Melbourne and other major Australian cities are booming with Sydney’s median house price having just leapt to $824,000 and Melbourne’s to $697,000. The rises are outstripping many Australians’ ability to buy, but not so for Chinese investors.

  • What slump? say property investors

    March 28, 2014

    Australian Tax Office records show one in seven taxpayers (14%) now own an investment property and one in 10 of those are negatively geared. Read more on the role investors are playing in a resurgent property market.