Covid taught us how difficult it is to make predictions about the future.
But I like a challenge, so I'm going to make 22 predictions for 2022.
Here they go:
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- Millennials will continue to move out of apartments and leave their hipster neighbourhoods to purchase family-sized houses as they reach the family formation stage of their lives.
- Decentralisation of the population will continue - but regional councils will need to make more land available for development.
- Hybrid work will dominate in Australia.
And as many will still need to go to the office occasionally, settling too far away from the office towers isn’t an option for many.
- House prices will continue to rise due to strong demand, and this will increase when migrants return.
Our government has no interest whatsoever in pushing house prices down.
- The average Australian house will get bigger in 2022 as lockdowns pulled functions from outside the home into our homes.
- Bunnings, Barbecues Galore, Harvey Norman — all those cocooning businesses will be doing really well.
A fair bit of our disposable income will be used to make the family home more liveable.
- Market research needs to be more careful with segmenting the population because one size doesn't fit all since we were impacted by Covid in a much different way across the country.
- The socioeconomic divide will continue to widen.
The pandemic didn’t impact all of us in the same way.
Highly skilled workers kept their jobs and many industries saw big profits while lower-skilled workers lost their jobs at high rates.
- Baby boomers will act with a sense of urgency as they feel cheated out of two good years of retirement.
Expect quite a bit of spending out of this cohort.
- The trend towards sliding into retirement by slightly decreasing the workload continues.
- The healthcare boom continues as the fastest growing economy in Australia.
- Gen X will be taking over more leadership positions as Baby Boomers leave the workforce.
- Near-universal skills shortage will be a driving force of holding back economic growth in Australia, and that's a big problem.
The short-term solution will be for existing staff to work longer hours.
- More retail spending will take place online.
- There will be no Corona baby boom (forget about it!) — the birth rate will continue to decline rather than rise.
- The demand for childcare will remain stable despite declining births as women will return to work within a year of childbirth in high numbers.
- The world will praise Australia for its handling of Covid because the world will simply be looking at deaths per million and the vaccination rate.
- Extreme weather events will become increasingly more frequent, so we must prepare for them.
- Older generations will join the young generations in demanding better digital services.
- 'The death of the wallet' — you will find yourself walking around the country without carrying a wallet and just handling things with your phone.
- 2022 will see the return of migration at scale — international students will be the first to arrive in Australia.
- Australians will continue to be a very optimistic, forward-looking, and positive bunch of people.
Note: This Blog and video is based on my article in The New Daily