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Home ownership key focus of The Nationals visit to Paterson

Leader of the Nationals David Littleproud and Senator Ross Cadell have heard from the
construction industry about the challenges faced by the sector, while making a visit to the
Hunter region on Wednesday.
Senator Cadell said it was crucial that housing was affordable for the people of Paterson,
while meeting staff from McDonald Jones Homes at Chisholm near Maitland.
“Last financial year, more than 1,180 development applications were approved by Maitland
City Council with the population growing by more than 2000 people,” Senator Cadell said.
“This rapid growth is broadening the supply and demand gap, meaning young people are
being priced out of home ownership.
“Labor’s lack of leadership on home ownership is glaring at a time when cost of living is the
biggest talking point at family dining tables.”
Mr Littleproud emphasised the importance of building Australia’s construction sector while
meeting with one of Australia’s largest builders.
“Australia has seen record levels of migration, while the construction of new homes is in
freefall across the country,” Mr Littleproud said.
“When supply goes down prices go up and unfortunately home ownership, especially for
first homebuyers, has never been further out of reach. Regional Australia desperately needs
builders who will back home ownership as well as tradies with the skills needed.”
McDonald Jones and MOJO CEO Rob Douglas shared his concerns for the sector amid
increased input costs and challenges in sourcing skilled tradespeople.
“While we have seen some stabilisation in supply chain costs from the wild fluctuations
during covid, prices are increasing, albeit modestly,” Mr Douglas said.
“Our biggest challenge is finding trades, especially in regional centres like Port Macquarie.
Sourcing labour is a key driver in housing costs at present. In New South Wales the supply of
land is also a major factor in housing supply.”
Mr Littleproud and Senator Cadell also spent the day meeting with businesses in the
Maitland area, including independent supermarket IGA and a childcare centre in the suburb
of Thornton.
“The cost-of-living crisis is impacting families in Maitland, who are struggling with the price
of food and childcare availability as well as accessibility,” Mr Littleproud said.
“The Nationals are committed to being a voice for regional Australia and will continue to
fight for common sense and practical solutions.”

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