Affordable rental housing a key to affordability for all

Pressure on rental housing has significantly increased over the last 2 years, with a range of recent rental housing data showing the increase in rental prices due to the severe shortage in the supply of all forms of housing.

“While new home building activity has increased, there continues to be a short fall in private rental housing to meet demand. The outcome of a shortage in supply is an ever growing increase in demand for both social and affordable rental housing across Australia,” said Kristin Brookfield, HIA Chief Executive Industry Policy.

“HIA has always maintained that sufficient housing needs to be available in each segment of the housing continuum. At a time when both owner occupied housing and market rate rental housing are under pressure, ensuring an adequate supply of affordable rental housing has never been more important.

“Affordable, subdisied rental housing gives people a safe place to live, and if possible the chance to save for a future where they can move along the housing continuum and into a home of their own.

“HIA’s federal election imperatives set out some practical suggestions that go to addressing the current pressures on private and community rental housing.

“One practical solution is to ensure the existing commonwealth rent assistance stays on par with inflation and the cost of living.

“From a big picture perspective, the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation needs to continue and grow its program of bonds to facilitate the construction of more community rental housing.

“Next year the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement will be reviewed. This agreement needs to do more and be used to identify ways that all governments, federal and state, can increase their commitment to new social housing supply, year on year.

“It is also important to ensure that private investors are supported to maintain their homes in the private rental market.

“Rental affordability is linked to house prices, but importantly at a time when not everyone can afford to buy a house due to high costs of living, affordable rental housing offers many people a stable place to live.

“This election provides an important opportunity to deliver secure housing for all. This will support Australia’s economic recovery and our future economic growth.”

Source: HIA