Urgent reform needed to boost housing supply

by Julia Corderoy04 Aug 2014
As many Australians face the fact that they may never own their own home, due to the harsh reality of housing affordability, the government is being urged to boost the supply of housing to ease the pain.

Master Builders Australia has told the Senate Inquiry into affordable housing that urgent reform is needed to increase housing supply. 

“Reducing the massive shortfall in new housing is the major challenge the nation faces in maintaining home ownership as a realistic aspiration rather than an unaffordable dream,” Master Builders CEO Wilhelm Harnisch said. 

This comes after data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed new residential building approvals declined by 5% in June, prompting a residential building industry association to question whether it is likely the property market has seen its peak in new home approvals.

Master Builders Australia submitted an “eight point Affordability Agenda” to the Inquiry which calls on all levels of government to commit to a national housing affordability agenda.

The Affordability Agenda includes reforms such as competition style payments made to local councils to improve the supply of releasable land, agreed ‘master plans’ to deliver a housing mix to meet the needs of different demographics, to make state and territory infrastructure charges subject to an affordability assessment and an online ‘InfoHub’ to allow ready comparisons between jurisdictions to enforce efficiency and accountability.