New report: Affordable housing creates jobs, boosts economy

Media release

May 9, 2019

New report: Affordable housing creates jobs, boosts economy

Economic modelling released today shows that Federal government subsidies to create 250,000 new affordable homes over the next 10 years would generate up to $40 billion in GDP and create up to 46,000 jobs a year.

The modelling by PwC and the McKell Institute found it would also save the Budget between $5-11 billion in Government services by shifting Australians living in in crisis accommodation into more sustainable, secure housing.

Everybody’s Home campaign spokesperson Kate Colvin said that delivering housing options that people on low incomes can afford would make a massive impact on homelessness.

Even accounting for the extra subsidy needed to ensure housing produced was affordable to the lowest income earners, there would still be an overall positive budgetary impact, as well as a stronger community for all.

In March an economic study by the University of NSW found that investment in social and affordable housing would put $12 billion into NSW’s economy over 40 years.

Today’s report is further proof that investment in social and affordable housing makes good economic sense.

“Australia has seen systematic underinvestment in social housing over the past two decades, which means we now have 116,000 Australians who are homeless every night, and more than 800,000 households experiencing chronic rental stress,” Ms Colvin said.

“Australia once had one of the best social housing programs in the world, with millions of Australians looking back on their childhoods grateful for a safe and secure home that enabled them to grow.

“We can build those homes again, but catching up with take considerable investment and time. This report shows once again, that investment will pay for itself.”

The national Everybody’s Home campaign is calling for a National Strategy that will help deliver 500,000 social and affordable homes over the next two decades.

Labor has committed to invest $6.6 billion over 10 years to help fund 250,000 affordable homes that will be managed by the not-for-profit community housing sector.

The Government has created the National Housing Finance and Investment Company (NHFIC) to give community housing providers access to cheaper finance, however has said delivering that the subsidy needed to grow social and affordable housing is not a priority, and has not yet made any announcements about how it will provide the social and affordable homes Australia needs.

Ms Colvin said any plan to create more below market housing must also ensure delivery of social housing for Australians on very low incomes and support for those with extra needs.

“Labor’s commitment to affordable housing will deliver cheaper rental properties. That is the missing piece that is currently creating more homelessness and making it harder to rehouse people,” Ms Colvin said.

“To make housing affordable for people on the lowest incomes, governments need to make a substantial additional investment such as land.”

Everybody’s Home campaign is calling on governments to:

  1. Develop a national strategy to provide the national shortfall of 500,000 social and affordable homes;
  2. Prioritise home buyers over investors by resetting the tax system;
  3. Ensure a better deal for renters;
  4. Increase Commonwealth Rent Assistance to provide immediate relief for renters in chronic rental stress; and
  5. Create a national plan to end homelessness by 2030.


MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Stokes 0478 504 280

The Everybody’s Home campaign has united the not for profit housing, homelessness and community sectors with the nation’s largest charities in calling for leaders to fix Australia’s housing system so that everybody has a home.

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