Local builder Dane Stidjup (40) says ever since Morrison’s Homebuilder grant every single job has been like a public school job.

“We just name a price” he says, perhaps a bit more truthful than usual after 7 schooners of bitter at the Lord Betoota hotel this afternoon.

“Everyone has forgotten how much anything costs haha”

“I stung this one old bird for 2 grand per step on the back patio. It’s deadset like dealing with the school principals. They have no idea”

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the average cost of building a family home in February in 2023 was $449,436.

This is 60k more expensive than it was in February 2022, when the average cost was $391,937 – at the height of the supply chain issues that had been caused by a combination of Chinese trade tariffs and the war in Ukraine.

However, in February 2021, before all of that shit, it cost $319,261.

With China turning the taps back on and the cargo ships back in Australian waters after pandemic border closures, many would argue that anyone still charging the same rates as they did when the shelves were empty would actually be price gouging.

This comes as the Australian supermarket duopoly of both Woolworths and Coles face a Federal Government inquiry into why the fuck a jar of instant coffee costs over $10.

The flag carrier of Qantas has also copped the wrath of the Australian public for selling tickets to cancelled flights.

But in the midst of all this corporate pillaging, Australia’s tradies are laying low enough to avoid the crosshairs.

“Hopefully nothing comes of it” laughs big Dane.

“How the fuck is some office nerd gonna know whats on the shelf at Bunnings… and how much it costs?”

“Unless I see a ute in the driveway there’s a 250% mark up on all materials. I think that might be industry wide haha”

With both sides of politics hamstrung by the Australian mythology that paints builders as hardworking and underpaid blue collar saints, Dane reckons the only thing that threatens this racket is immigrants who’ll do his job for less and better.

“Anyway, saw Albo is putting a stop to that this week too. Cha-ching!” he laughs.

“Hoping to get in on some of his new social housing builds… Sounds like a tradies picnic that shit”

“Who the fuck is gonna tell me what is and isn’t waterproofed?

“Albo? Penny Wong?”



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