Better Apartment Design Standards, Victoria: New rules for balconies, prices could jump

Posted on:

Melbourne’s apartment construction sector could suffer, and homebuyers could cop a $20k increase, under a government tweak to the Better Apartment Design Standards.

Apartment buyers may end up paying an extra $20,000 for their homes under new guidelines announced by the state government on Sunday.

The Urban Development Institute of Australia’s Victorian chapter made this estimate after a range of construction groups warned the update to the Better Apartment Design Standards could stifle the sector’s recovery from COVID-19 and hit the Victorian economy.

The revisions to the state’s Better Apartments standards, announced by Planning Minister Richard Wynne, require developers to scrap balconies for apartment towers above 40m tall and to increase the prevalence of green spaces.

Apartment developments with more than 10 homes would be required to include a communal outdoor space, up from those with 40 homes under prior guidelines.

Buildings above five storeys high would have to include wind-tunnel modelling when establishing impacts from the build.

Blank walls and high fences would be barred at street level, while car park entries and rubbish bin collection points would need to be out of sight.

The changes are aimed at helping build better communities in new developments and boosting energy efficiency, as well as resident health and wellbeing.

UDIA Victorian division president Ashley Williams said the new guidelines would take choice away from homebuyers, and hit the state’s economy as a “significant reduction in new projects that make it into construction”.

“We estimate the proposed landscaped communal open space will add up to $20,000 per apartment,” Mr Williams said.

“The rigid application of these guidelines will lead to increasing construction costs that will erode project viability and ultimately lead to reduced housing supply and housing affordability.”

Property Council of Australia Victorian executive director Danni Hunter said the industry was already seeking targeted stimulus for the apartment construction sector as a result of COVID-19 and low-population-growth impacts.

The group will present economic modelling estimating the economic fallout of the tweaks to the government in about a fortnight.

“We have to protect Melbourne’s affordability advantage and apartment supply pipeline by ensuring design requirements are flexible enough to respond to the changing desires and affordability levels of purchasers,” Ms Hunter said.

Upon releasing the new guidelines, the Planning Minister said they were “crucial” to liveability and wellbeing for future high-density living.

“People are spending more time in their homes and are using their apartments as places of work,” Mr Wynne said.

“Having green space and communal areas is vital to the physical and mental health and wellbeing of apartment residents.”

A government spokesperson said economic modelling had demonstrated an overall community benefit from the changes.

Thursday March 25th, 2021
Prev
Friday February 12th, 2021
Next
Central Victorian Conveyancer

At Central Victoria Conveyancing, as Victorian farmers and former city dwellers, we understand all your Victorian country, suburban and city property concerns. We are with you all the way through your transaction, we are always available to discus any concerns or questions you may have in a friendly and easy to understand way with no unnecessary legal jargon.

Our Advantages

Whether you are a first home buyer or looking to upsize or down size from your current home, a business looking to buy or sell, a developer looking to subdivide, an investor looking for your best options, or a farmer selling land ( we can help with water shares too), our team at Central Victoria Conveyancing can help you with advice and legal professional property services to suit your requirements and needs.

Contact Us
📍 31b High Street, Lancefield, VIC, Australia 3435
📞 (03) 5429-2073 (Lancefield)
📞 (03) 8804 5740 (Melbourne)
📱 0419-581-844 (Clare de Kok)
📱 0430-225-348 (Clare Spicer)
✉️ office@cvcproperty.com.au

Liability limited by a scheme approved under professional standards legislation

© 2021 Central Victoria Conveyancing Contact Us