Regional Housing Taskforce Report provides the keys for government to improve housing supply

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Regional Housing Taskforce Report provides the keys for government to improve housing supply

The release today by the Department of Planning Industry & Environment of the Findings Report by the Regional Housing Taskforce, was welcomed by UDIA NSW and marks an important milestone in addressing the housing price escalation, supply and demand issues in the Regions.

Over the last few years the housing supply and affordability crisis has spread from Sydney to the regions, with housing prices growing 48% in key regional areas, while prices have increased 32% in Sydney.

“This regional focus from the NSW Government is crucial to avert the emerging housing crisis in the regions. The Hunter, Central Coast and Illawarra Shoalhaven regions are facing similar housing challenges to Sydney – including low supply, higher prices and complicated planning processes. We are encouraged that the Taskforce has consulted widely and understands the issues. From here, we are looking for a real commitment from government for better planning alignment and coordination across government and more proportional investment in the regions.” said Steve Mann, CEO, UDIA NSW.

The Taskforce consulted with UDIA and more than 500 community, local government and industry stakeholders and we were pleased to see such a thorough report reflecting the issues we raised.

The report also validates our own findings in the UDIA Home Purchaser Sentiment Survey which revealed that 30% of respondents in Sydney were interested in moving outward including to the regions.  This will continue to have a massive impact on supply and affordability in regional areas.

UDIA  lodged a comprehensive submission on behalf of our Members and given the Taskforce has heard our concerns, we are hopeful it will pick up the recommendations we made in the submission, including:

  1. Establish better cross-government coordination to effectively plan for adequate housing supply by enhancing the role of the Urban Development Program (UDP) to ensure new housing areas are supported by funded infrastructure and have appropriately addressed biodiversity issues;
  2. Accelerate housing delivery by creating a $1bn fund (like the Housing Acceleration Fund) to build enabling infrastructure which unlocks a development ready pipeline for housing, with proportional allocation to each region; and
  3. Create a sustainable housing pipeline by accelerating approval of current proposals and encouraging more housing diversity.

UDIA agrees with the report’s statement that the most impactful solutions will be those which are place-based and carefully targeted at untangling the complexities specific to the particular area in which they arise and those that address the systemic issues that impact all communities.

The Taskforce will release its recommendations later this month and we encourage the government to develop a rapid implementation for the recommendations, as we look to a housing led recovery from the delta shutdowns.

ENDS

Media Enquiries:
Deanna Lane 0416 295 898 or dlane@udiansw.com.au.
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