Building slump hits landscapers

The house-building slump will force landscape companies to crash out of business or lay off staff, fears an industry leader.

BALI director Neil Huck said members were feeling the fallout from the collapse of the housing market. "Firms say they will try to carry on but they have lost orders, and builders may mothball sites that have permission for homes."

One BALI member had seen 40 per cent of his forward orders from housing companies cancelled, Huck added. "He will have to lay off staff, but doesn't know how many. It will start to affect firms after the current batch of work ends.

"I think some companies that work with house builders will go to the wall. In the boom, some went from doing the odd garden to entire housing developments. They will have to downsize or disappear. It's worrying, and what's unusual is how fast it's happened."

An APL representative said: "It's an area of concern and some of our larger members have seen smaller job orders falling off. However, the larger projects seem to be going ahead. Maybe the downturn will have a ripple effect and will take time to follow through."

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