Cost of NBN high for first home builders: Housing Industry Association

Association concerned that costs of NBN not clearly established during planning phase

Greater clarity on the costs of developing the National Broadband Network (NBN) for housing developers is needed, according to the Housing Industry Association's (HIA) chief executive.

At the Parliamentary Hearings into the 2011 Telecommunications Legislation Amendment Bill, Graham Wolfe said the association has concerns about the costs new homeowners may have to fork out in order to have access to the NBN.

“Our concern is related to what the technical solutions and standards would be [around the NBN rollout], and they have been developing and evolving which makes it difficult when developers are negotiating with providers like Telstra,” Wolfe said.

“Having technical standards that are used for the development are needed and [should be] commonplace.”

The lack of government input has led developers to create their own ballpark figure for new homeowners accessing the NBN.

“Developers have continued to plan, finance and continue projects,” he said.

“Suffice to say, in the absence of certainty, many have moved forward to provision the cost of optical fibre.”

Wolfe said the specifics of installing NBN infrastructure were not clearly laid out in the planning stages of the project.

“Technical specifications are needed," he said.

"That they were not carved in stone during development was a problem.

“There is a cost for being fibre ready that ... costs around $800 to $1000 as a ballpark figure.”

The City of Tea Tree Gully voiced similar concerns earlier this year, saying NBN Co needed to step up its engagement with relevant government departments and the Australian community if the rollout of the NBN or face an increasingly ambivalent public.

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Tags NBNNetworkingNational Broadband Network (NBN)Housing Industry Association (HIA)parliamentary hearing2011 Telecommunications Legislation Amendment Bill

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