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Home Builders Grants serve as a Fire recovery interrupt

The Beagle Editor, On the 4th of February 2020 the ABC posted an article about the Australian bushfire rebuild and concluded that rebuilds of bushfire destroyed homes would take up to five years, using the time Tathra is taking to rebuild as a yard stick. I do not believe this time span had considered the repairs to properties that had been partially damaged, such as my partner’s home in Malua Bay. To date our insurance company has settled on some items and property damage, and we are still waiting for them to finalise our claim for retaining walls which were destroyed by the bushfire that swept through our region on New Year’s Eve. Prior to the Morrison Government’s announcement of the HomeBuilder Grant we thought we would have replacement retaining walls completed close to Christmas 2020. Now we are not so sure. What seems to be missing from the current discussion is how this announcement would impact on all those destroyed and damaged properties in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales. Never mind that the benefit from this grant is certainly not aimed at those who have lost or have damaged properties and seems to be aimed more at the higher end of homeowners, this will probably cause more delay to those affected by the bushfires. It is highly likely that builders will prioritise HomeBuilder Grant applications if for no other reason than that there are very tight parameters timewise, attached to this construction work whereas, no timelines are applied to fire damaged properties throughout the three states. So instead of five years to rebuild it is likely to be pushed out even further. Donald MacDonald

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