A simple, nationalistic act like buying local building products excite the entire construction industry nowadays.
A research conducted by Roy Morgan found out that nine of ten Australians prefer buying locally made products over imported ones. The results reflected the strongest degree of patronage towards Aussie-made products from the past two years.
“The love affair between Australians and Aussie-made products shows no sign of fading…It’s the healthiest that it’s been for two years!”, says Michele Levine, chief executive of Roy Morgan Research.
Good thing this phenomenon didn’t end with items you can purchase in supermarkets. In the construction industry, we encountered clients who ask about local alternatives to imported construction materials in their design plan. People are confident that local building products are as great as those from the USA and Europe. They trust that products manufactured in the country are of quality and can last longer than its overseas counterparts.
Australia’s design and built industry is a trillion dollar industry. Preference to local building products will definitely benefit local economies, and in time, the national economy. Once we broaden our horizon, we’ll understand that choosing local is an edge to all key players in the industry. The benefits start from the manufacturer, supplier, design firm, builder, and client in the following ways:
Promotes business supporting business relationships
Patronising local building products can strengthen business relationships inside the design and build industry, particularly between manufacturers, designers, and builders.
Let's begin with the manufacturers of local construction materials. Designers and builders play a key role in their sales, as well as in their product development. Giving them support will enable their company to upgrade and update their product, so it matches the needs of the market. It also helps them engineer a better, more advanced, and more globally competitive versions of these construction materials.
At the same time, supporting local manufacturers can boost their business confidence. If they're a startup, you're giving them the right attitude that businesses need to survive in the long run. Businesses that don't hold back makes the whole business community stronger as a whole.
Meanwhile, lead times are tighter on the side of design firms and builders. Competition and immediate client gratification put these businesses under constant pressure to meet the promised lead time. With that, it is wiser to source building products locally.
With local building products, you avoid waiting for construction materials that need to travel halfway around the world before it reaches the construction site. It’s easier to resolve warranty issues this way. Also, having an efficient supply benefits firms and builders in terms of customer acquisition and retention, increased number of projects finished, increased profit margins, and a good reputation.
Overall, supporting Australian-made products is a self-fulfilling act, which turns the design and built industry sustainable and self-sufficient in the future.
Elevate the quality of residential and commercial structures in the country
As mentioned before, local building materials that gain support from the market gain room for improvement. What you should know is that our local building products are engineered to withstand varying environmental conditions.
We have eight major climate zones in Australia, each one is different from the other. The country experiences unpredictable, harsh, and sometimes destructive weather—ones with extreme winds, intense rain, flooding, snow, bushfire, and cyclones. Unfortunately, we do not have a one-kind-fits-all type of structure (yet). We can only build using passive design, or building based on the site and local climate.
Choosing building materials is an integral part of the passive design. If we use Australian building products which are proven to last under the country’s extreme weather, we’re already making an effort to make our homes and structures durable. We can boast about our sustainable, world-class homes in the future.
Hug the inner Australianness
When we use local building products in residential and commercial spaces, we show the culture and lives of our people. Choosing it over imported products is like embracing your own, unique Aussie self.
According to Anne Maree Sargeant, the Chairwoman of the Authentic Design Alliance (ADA), local furniture makers and craftsmen are creating more beautiful and original pieces as now. These pieces are sold and used by interior designers to create stunning home designs.
ADA, a nationwide organisation which upholds the integrity original design, saw that a contemporary design culture has developed among people and it is spreading throughout the country. Australian contemporary design revolves around modernism, practicality, functionality, and interest. It’s not always aligned with the trend but it never gets old. It is a design that could last a lifetime.
How to tap local building products in the business
Perception of Australian-made products has changed. Now that clients in the design+build industry look into using Australian-made building materials for their projects, we can take advantage of it to boost our brand and our sales. Doing so will attract potential customers who are already passionate about supporting the local economy.
However, it shouldn’t be something that companies should bluff about so they can increase profit. They must avoid misleading their clients in order to fish projects.