Image – Canva
  • Taking the unused roof space in strata complexes and using it to build new properties
  • "This empty space is becoming an increasingly valuable asset", said Mr Livesey
  • A popular way to fit more people into the popular inner and middle rings of capital cities

The solution to housing Australia’s likely influx of new residents will be airspace development said Buy Airspace founder and strata property development specialist Warren Livesey.

This comes as the New South Wales public service recently advised Premier Dominic Perrottet to admit two million immigrants over the next five years in the state.

On top of this, before the COVID-19 pandemic, Australia’s population was growing by 1.5% per year, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, with 79% of that growth occurring in capital cities.

The inner and middle rings of capital cities, which is where most residents will want to live, is already taken or too valuable.

The recent property boom has seen prices across the combined capital cities soar by 20.8% over the year to October, according to CoreLogic.

Mr Livesey said an increasingly popular way to fit more people into those suburbs is through airspace development which involves taking the unused roof space in strata complexes and using it to build new properties.

Strata property development specialist and Buy Airspace founder Warren Livesey. Image – LinkedIn

“With land at a premium and in short supply, this empty space is becoming an increasingly valuable asset – something many strata owners will soon realise.

“Think how many unused roof spaces there are in our capital cities – all of which can potentially be developed into top-floor apartments.

Rather than letting it go to waste, strata owners will increasingly capitalise on this airspace, especially when they see other developments go up around them.”

Warren Livesy, Buy Airspace

Strata owners can sell their airspace to investors or group together and undertake the project themselves, said Mr Livesey.

“The developer gets a valuable piece of land they can turn into top-floor apartments, often with stunning views. Penthouses are also typically cheaper to build than apartments at lower levels as the foundations, services and access points are already there. So they only require lightweight construction.

“Strata owners can use the proceeds from the sale to pay for repairs and maintenance of their building.”

However, for airspace developments to go ahead, strata owners need council approval and also support from their fellow residents.

In New South Wales, for example, a project can be approved only if it’s supported by at least 75% of the owners, according to Mr Livesey.

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