Shortage boosts tradie value 8pc

The skills shortage is having a big impact on the price of a Melbourne tradesperson – up 8.3 per cent in the 12 months to March.

The latest HIA-Austral Bricks Trades Report expects a further decline in availability to place more upward pressure.

With the government and private sector seeking to increase affordable housing this cycle, HIA Victorian executive director Robert Harding said costs could come in higher than expected.

“We’re all paying the price for an inflexible apprenticeship system that makes it difficult to attract and retain workers into the building industry,” the lobbyist added.

“We need to urgently increase the supply of affordable housing in Melbourne but with a shortage of skilled tradespeople it could take longer and cost more than it needs to” (story continues below).

The executive said the problem could be reversed.

“One part of the solution is to make the apprenticeship system more flexible, so that people who don’t complete it can still walk away with intermediate qualifications that are recognised by the industry,” according to Mr Harding.

“By doing this we will attract and retain more skilled tradespeople in the industry, and reduce the upward pressure on the price of a ‘tradie’”.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of