Melbourne’s Growth Spurt

Australian Bureau of Statistics figures reveal thatMelbourneis continuing to experience a population surge, growing faster than any other Australian city for the ninth consecutive year. The records showMelbourne’s population boom accounted for one third of the nation’s growth in 2009-10 and puts the city within 500,000 people of Sydney.

In the year to June 2010,Melbourneis estimated to have grown by 79,000 people, or more than 200 per day to reach a total population of 4.077 million.

Since 2001, the city has gained 605,000 new residents, up 17%, pushing out the urban boundary in most growth corridors. That is far ahead of growth of 447,000 inSydney, 380,000 inBrisbane, and 303,000 inPerth.

The four fastest-growing areas inAustraliain 2009-10 were all onMelbourne’s fringe. Wyndham (which includes Werribee), Melton, Whittlesea (South Morang) and Cardinia (Cranbourne) left behind all the boom areas of other states, with their combined populations growing by 33,216 or 7%. If the growth rates of 2001-10 continue,Melbournewill overtakeSydneyin 2028, when each city will have roughly 5.6 million people.

It’s no wonder then, that rental vacancy rates have been at all time lows for over five years and that property prices have shown excellent capital gains across the city over the medium term.

Walk On In The City of Port Phillip


With broad streets filled with unique architecture and the beach only a brief stroll away, the neighbourhoods Chisholm & Gamon work in are spoilt for choice when it comes to walks. It’s no surprise then, that the City of Port Phillip plans to improve and invest in our outdoor amenities further.

The City of Port Phillip have adopted a new Sustainable Transport Strategy, Walk Plan and Bike Plan, and aim to make our municipality leaner and greener than ever. The new plan was created after a process of community consultation and formal submissions taken from relevant State Government departments. The plan is to be executed over a decade, and looks to create safer walking and bike tracks to move rate-payers from location to location safely. By encouraging locals to walk or bike their way around the city, the council hope to reduce the overall carbon footprint of their community. This should hopefully lead to fewer residents needing a car, creating less congested residential streets and less pollution too. The City of Port Phillip have created a ‘hierarchy’ of road-users, with pedestrians on top, followed by cyclists, buses and trains, cars, trucks and trams. Ahh! Yet another reason to move to our neighbourhood! Look forward to improved pathways and biketracks in the near future.

TAGs: City of  Port Phillip, Chisholm & Gamon, Sustainable Transport Strategy

Own your first home sooner

If you are saving for your first home, a first home saver account is a good way to help you reach your goal. The government will contribute an extra amount that is a percentage of your savings each year.

What are first home saver accounts?

Unlike other savings accounts, a first home saver account can only be used when you are saving to buy or build your first home.

Each year the government will make a 17% contribution on amounts you deposit, up to $5,500 per year. This means that if you deposit $5,500 in one financial year, you will receive $935 from the government.

Some of the main features of these accounts are:

  • The interest you earn on the account is only taxed at a rate of 15%.
  • You have to save at least $1,000 each year over at least 4 financial years before you can withdraw the money.
  • The maximum account balance is capped at $80,000 but this cap will be indexed in future years.
  • The money has to be used for your first home. If it is not, it is added to your super and you can’t access it until you are 65.

Are first home saver accounts right for you?

First home saver accounts earn high interest and you get a government bonus to put towards your deposit. Make sure you think hard about your future needs before opening a first home saver account. If, for example, you decide in 3 years that you’d rather move overseas or put the money into a new business, you won’t be able to immediately withdraw the money from your account. The money will be transferred to your super and you won’t be able to access it until you are 65.

Consider all your savings options. You may prefer opening a different kind of savings account that is more flexible than a first home saver account.

Opening an account

Not all first home saver accounts are the same. Choose the account provider you want to have your account with and read their product disclosure statement to find out more. Banks, building societies, credit unions, life-insurance companies, friendly societies and trustees of public-offer super funds can all offer first home saver accounts.

Visit the ATO site for more information

Melbourne Writer’s Festival : Highlights

Of the many things Melbourne is famous for, being a literary city is one moniker we are very proud of. Today’s Chisholm & Gamon blog is dedicated to all you coffee sippin’, bookshop  browsin’, bloglovin’ Melbournites – we hope to see you at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival ‘Stories Unbound’ which premieres today and runs until the 4th of September.

Starting in 1986, the Melbourne Writer’s Festival has encouraged the growth of an inquisitive local body of authors and readers for over 20 years. Each year the festival has expanded, and we’ve been lucky to enjoy cross-disciplinary talks from a range of politicians, authors, activists, philosophers and media moguls in that time. The events range in genre, from literary dinners to Rockwiz tapings. This year’s festival demonstrates a range of terrific variety, and we highlight a few events that have really grabbed our attention at Chisholm & Gamon.

Come along to the glamorous BMW Edge theatre at Federation Square to hear Jay Rosen talk on the culture of political reportage. Jay is a unique commentator, having written extensively in American publications. He argues that the impoverished notion the public have of political office has informed the kind of media we pursue concerning it, and looks to education and respect as a solution for a better quality of media.

If you can’t get enough of ABC’s infamous show that gets one jumping off the couch to argue back with the TV, come along to this special Melbourne Writer’s Festival edition of the programme, live on the 29th of August. Hosted by Tony Jones and featuring Don Watson, Lindsay Tanner, Kate Grenville and Anna Funder, this Q&A is sure to be exciting.

From Melbourne’s enfant terrible of all things french and haute couture on a plate comes a glamorous new book. Celebrate with Shannon in discussion with John Lethlean whils you enjoy a three course culinary adventure at Vue de Monde on the 30th of August.

TAGS: Chisholm & Gamon, Melbourne Writer’s Festival, MWF, Vue de Monde, John Lethlean, Shannon Bennett, Q&A, Don Watson, Lindsay Tanner, Kate Grenville, Anna Funder, Rockwiz, BMW Edge, Federation Square, Jay Rosen

C&G Local Focus Interview: Michael Perusco of the Sacred Heart Mission

Today’s C&G Local Focus Interview is with Michael Perusco, CEO of the Sacred Heart Mission. At the helm of the organisation since 2003, he is also the Chairperson of the Council to Homeless Persons, the peak body for organisations working with people who are homeless in Victoria. Prior to his career in the community sector, Michael worked in the commercial sector including KPMG & Arthur Andersen where he gained his Chartered Accounting qualification. Chisholm & Gamon have worked alongside the Sacred Heart Mission in sponsoring and promoting many of their fundraising events – and it’s an association we’re most proud of. Find out more about the Sacred Heart Mission and how you can become involved in this dynamic charity association. Read on!


How long has Sacred Heart Mission been working collaboratively with Chisholm & Gamon?

Sacred Heart Mission and Chisholm & Gamon first came together in 2005. Since then they have been involved in various ways and have been major sponsors of our Dine with the Champions dinner for many years. Chisholm & Gamon and Sacred Heart Mission both have a strong connection with the local community and it makes sense to work together.

What is the key role of Sacred Heart Mission in our community?

Sacred Heart Mission has been working in the St Kilda community for nearly 30 years providing services to people who are homeless, at risk of becoming homeless or disadvantaged. We provide a wide range of services including a meals program, health services, aged care facilities, rooming house and assistance for things such as accommodation, emergency aid and access to free showers and laundry facilities. Our aim is to work with people to rebuild their lives and reconnect with the community.

Has the community attitude towards charity changed during your period at Sacred Heart Mission? If so – how?

Sacred Heart Mission has been and is seen as a key part of the community and we’ve been fortunate to have strong support from the community and people value our work. The support is shown through the number of individuals who volunteer in different areas of the Mission, around 900, as well as financial support and the in-kind donations.  We value the support we receive and hope that it continues to grow.

What outcomes at Sacred Heart Mission are you most proud of?

I am proud of all of our work but if I had to choose just one it would be Journey to Social Inclusion (J2SI).  We spent three years developing the project and raising the $4million required to implement it. Essentially, the model provides people who are long term homeless with the support we believe is necessary to break the cycle of chronic homelessness. The current system is failing this group of people and we are aiming to demonstrate that chronic homelessness is not an intractable social issue. Twelve months into this 3 year program, the results are very encouraging and we are excited about the potential of the final 2 years.

How did you come to work in the not for profit sector?

I am passionate about ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to participate fully in their community, irrespective of the challenges they have faced in their life.  This is the core work of Sacred Heart Mission and I am very proud to be a part of it.

How do corporate giving programmes and charity participation benefit the business community?

For some businesses it is all about the bottom line, but for others like Chisholm & Gamon who have giving programs and support charities like the Mission, it is also about being a good corporate citizen. For many people, community has become important to them and businesses are starting to see people either coming to them or staying with them not only because they are providing good services and or products but because they are also supporting the community around them. For organisations like the Mission, financial support through donations are extremely important, so too is support and promotion of events and activities.

Please describe the value of the contribution that Chisholm & Gamon have made to Sacred Heart Mission.

Chisholm & Gamon’s support of the Mission has been amazing.  Not only have they contributed nearly $50,000 to date but they have provided many real estate boards to promote our events at no cost.  Our events are major fundraisers for the organisation and we are reliant on cost efficient and effective ways to promote the events to be able to maximise the profits. They have also provided their professional services through running the ‘rowdy’ auctions at events and at the recent Heart of St Kilda Concert put their selling skills to work selling raffle tickets – we had our best result this year!  Torsten Kasper, Managing Director, is a member of our Mission Possible committee who are working hard at the moment for this year’s Dine with the Champions dinner, 13 October. Chisholm & Gamon have also recently begun to promote our op shops to people who are moving in or out of properties they have sold or manage.  We have a collection service and for Chisholm & Gamon clients we collect items even if it falls outside our normal collection service area.

What changes do you see for your organisation in the next year – what big Sacred Heart events can the community become involved with?

As costs rise for the general public, they also rise for us so we need to make sure we can keep meeting the need.  Events that people can get involved with in the coming year are our Dine with the Champions dinner (13 October), Light up a Life cocktail party (March 2012) and Heart of St Kilda Concert (June 2012).  Another way to get involved is to support our op shops, we have six and are always looking for good quality items to sell.  Details of shop locations and a collection booking form can be found on our website.  The profits from the op shops go to ensure we can keep our doors open. And finally, people can volunteer in many different ways at the Mission. If you are interested there are also details on the website,

TAGS: Michael Perusco, Dine with the Champions, Light Up A Life, Heart of St Kilda, Sacred Heart Mission, Chisholm & Gamon, Torsten Kasper, Journey To Social Inclusion


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