Tradies look to the bush as city living takes its toll

By Jarrod
3 Min Read

A national survey revealed over 90 per cent of metro tradies could be persuaded to ditch the city streets for regional living. 

The study by the Regional Australia Institute (RAI) found more than three in five metropolitan tradies or engineers would consider a job in the regions, with nearly a quarter saying they would definitely make the move.

Construction industry professionals said the rising cost of petrol and tolls were hitting their wallets hard. They also cited a desire for a more relaxed lifestyle, shorter commute times, a stronger sense of community and the opportunity to own their own business as attractive elements of regional life.

Alarmingly, nearly half of all building and construction workers (44 per cent) reported struggles with their mental health, with one-third citing job insecurity as they feel the pipeline of work is drying up. The vast majority of city-based tradies (88 per cent) also said they were searching for a more relaxed lifestyle/ better work-life balance.

Regional opportunities

From engineers to electricians, builders to bricklayers, there are more than 15,000 regional jobs on offer in the building and construction sectors. 

As part of Regional Australia’s Biggest Ever Recruitment Drive, RAI is helping tradies find their dream jobs in regional Australia through its ‘Move to More’ online regional jobs hub.

CEO of RAI, Liz Ritchie, says while the drive has already been a great success, the need remains for a skilled workforce to enhance regional infrastructure and build the regions of tomorrow.

“To rebalance the nation and really grow regional Australia, we need enhanced regional infrastructure. And to build that infrastructure, you need a skilled and experienced workforce,” Ms Ritchie said.

“So if you’re a plumber who’s tired of sitting in rush hour traffic or an electrician who spends hours commuting from job to job, we’re imploring you to think beyond city limits. Regional Australia is crying out for skilled tradespeople to build the houses, hospitals and schools of tomorrow.”

Engineer Angela Durston-Ryan, who recently relocated from Melbourne to Shepparton, says regional Victoria offers a range of benefits compared to city living.

“I was hesitant about moving my life from Melbourne, but I’m so glad I did. Life in Shepparton is more affordable, the community is fantastic, and I’ve been having so much fun,” Ms Durston-Ryan said.

“As an engineer, I’m working on several sites around town, all of which are just two minutes from home. There is no rush hour commute and I have more time to do the things I love, like hanging out with my partner and walking my dog.”

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By Jarrod
Jarrod Brown combines his background in journalism, copywriting and digital marketing with a lifelong passion for storytelling. He has a strong passion for new and emerging consumer technology within the building sector. He lives on the Sunshine Coast - usually found glued to the deck of a surfboard.

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