Friday, 12 June 2020
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. I refer to the Prime Minister's comments about his HomeBuilder scheme:
If you've been putting off that renovation or new build, the extra $25,000 we're putting on the table … means now's the time to get started.
How many Australians who've been putting off renovating their kitchens or bathrooms will get a cent from this scheme?
The scheme provides for 27,000 new projects, which is 7,000 renovations/new builds—substantial renovations, which are new builds—and 20,000 new home constructions. It was never the intention of this program to provide subsidy support for small-scale renovations. That was not the purpose. I'll tell you why we weren't going to do that. We weren't going to do that, because of the risk of integrity to the program and a repeat of the insulation batts farce that occurred under the Labor Party, where people were going around, knocking on doors and basically pulling in pink batts and saying they were going to put them in your roof, and pocketing the difference. It was a joke. It was a complete failure—
The Prime Minister will pause for a second.
Mr Dreyfus interjecting—
Okay, now that the member for Isaacs has finished, he can leave the chamber under 94(a).
The member for Isaacs then left the chamber.
The member for Mitchell is warned. The member for Deakin will cease interjecting. The Prime Minister.
On this program, we were not going to give rise to a situation where people passing themselves off as kitchen renovators were going to go and knock on the doors of pensioners, rip out their sinks and their dishwashers and then seek to claim some government subsidy. That's not the nature of this program. This isn't for do-it-yourself home renovations. This is about approved work of significant scale by certified builders to enable people to bring forward projects that they have put off and now can proceed with.
I note the derision that is applied by those opposite to someone who might be proceeding with a substantial renovation, a new build of their home, of some $150,000. The average loan taken out for a renovation is $164,000. I can tell you that's the case because there are families around this country who cannot afford to go and build a new home. Their families are expanding and their children are growing up; they can't afford to sell their house and go and buy a new piece of land and engage in a new construction. So, what do they do? They borrow money to expand their existing home and renovate substantially their existing home because they can't afford to build a $300,000 or $350,000 new home.
The opposition's derision of this initiative smacks of two things: (1) they never learnt the mistakes of their failed schemes when they were in government; and (2) they don't know what's going on in the suburban families of this country.