A consistent and transparent model for affordable housing critical
The best model for ensuring a strong pipeline of affordable housing in NSW must be found to ensure we produce enough housing over the next 20 years to support our growth.
The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) report released today, Supporting affordable housing supply: inclusionary planning in new and renewing communities, provides food for thought on how NSW could boost the delivery of more affordable housing in the years ahead.
By comparing the models for inclusionary affordable housing zoning in South Australia, the UK, USA and NSW, the report provides policy development options to produce more affordable housing.
“The AHURI report provides an overview for how different jurisdictions are tackling the challenge of building more affordable housing; in NSW we are only now beginning to catch up on an undersupply of housing and that pushed up house prices especially in Sydney,” Property Council NSW Executive Director Jane Fitzgerald said today.
“The Property Council supports approaches that help ensure we have great built spaces and equitable growth – but adding more complexity or cost to our planning system is not the way to go.
“The plans recently finalised by the Greater Sydney Commission included an affordable rental housing target for new residential development of between 5 and 10 per cent where financially viable and this seems a measured response to a difficult problem.
“Apart from ensuring housing supply is not perversely affected, there should also be only one scheme – a consistent scheme – across Sydney. The target should also be matched with density bonuses and other incentives as has worked well in the UK and US.
“Consistency and transparency in the scheme is critical; it is really important that any affordable housing targets are clear before land gets rezoned so the amount paid for the land reflects the requirements. If this doesn’t happen, the costs of the scheme will be passed on to average home buyers worsening affordability for them.
“The AHURI report highlights that we must have a strategic approach to more affordable housing, not piecemeal or arbitrary action.
“Ultimately the NSW Government should develop a NSW Affordable Housing Policy governing not only how local councils apply affordable housing levies but exploring potential incentives, state and local, to stimulate the supply of affordable housing through a range of planning and/or taxation measures including supporting Build-to-Rent.”
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