Property Council welcomes finalised Housing SEPP

The Property Council of Australia has welcomed the NSW Government’s finalised Housing SEPP released today however has flagged there is still room for improvement in relation to student housing.

Property Council’s NSW Executive Director Luke Achterstraat acknowledged the work done by Minister Stokes and the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment.

“As we continue to battle with the rise of housing prices across the state, this finalised piece of legislation has the potential to address concerns around housing affordability and diversity, including provisions for boarding houses, group homes, affordable housing, build-to-rent and especially seniors living,” Mr Achterstraat said.

“The inclusion of ‘Seniors Living’ as a mandatory permitted use in low density residential zones opens up over 80,000 hectares of potential developments within the greater Sydney area, which is a huge win for the industry and will help ensure the safety and care of the elderly.

“Allowing the development of seniors living in existing low-density areas will ensure our growing elderly population can live in supportive accommodation in communities close to their friends and families which is line with the findings of the Aged Care Royal Commission.”

Mr Achterstraat said the SEPP also introduced a new type of modern housing product, ‘co-living’ aimed at providing apartment-style rental accommodation for couples and singles in accessible locations close to transport and services.

“The property industry welcomes this new form of housing product but notes that the incentives needed to encourage the investment and development for this type of housing could be improved upon.”

Mr Achterstraat also flagged concerns surrounding student housing.

“We are disappointed to note that the final SEPP has failed to include planning provisions for student housing – a critical sector of accommodation needed to support Australia’s booming tertiary education sector,” he said.

‘With the return of international students to Australia in the coming weeks as borders reopen, ensuring we have a supply of appropriately located, modern and high-quality student housing accommodation is critical to ensure that students have a positive experience and the university sector continues to grow and expand.

“Student housing is a very particular type of accommodation which doesn’t fall into any of the typical types of residential development, hence the need for specific planning provisions to support this.”

Media contact: Aidan Green | M 0491 030 028 | E [email protected]