Property underrated by education providers

5:00 AM Saturday July 8, 2017 Colin Taylor

The bulk of property jobs are in construction and related architectural, engineering and technical services. Photo / Colin Taylor

The property sector’s importance to the New Zealand economy is not adequately reflected in the attention it receives from education providers, says John Church, Bayleys’ national director commercial.

Church says a recent report, commissioned by the Property Council and undertaken by economic consultancy Urban Economics, shows that property has overtaken manufacturing as New Zealand’s largest single industry.

The report found the property industry grew by $11.7 billion over the 2007-2016 period - more than double the growth of any other industry - with a direct contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) of $29.8 billion or 13 per cent of total GDP in the March 2016 year.

Writing in Bayleys’ latest Total Property portfolio magazine, Church says the property industry deserves to be accorded more focus within the education system, given its economic significance and substantial growth over the past decade.

“The property industry still struggles for recognition at a university level despite the passionate advocacy of Professor Deborah Levy, head of the University of Auckland’s Department of Property, whose trail-blazing work for the sector was appropriately recognised with a lifetime achievement award at this year’s RICS [Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors] awards,” says Church.

“More work could also be done within our secondary schools to promote property as a serious career option worthy of the consideration of students.”

The report also found that the property industry is the nation’s fourth largest employer and growing fast, with 160,800 people – or one in 12 workers – in property related jobs.

The bulk of these property jobs are in construction and related architectural, engineering and technical services, with 9800 employed in real estate services.

“While the construction sector creates the buildings that we live, work and relax in; the real estate sector has an important role to play in maximising the value of those property assets,” says Church. “Well-executed property sales and leases release funds for further development and property acquisitions and make a significant contribution to our country’s prosperity.”

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John Church, Bayleys