Federal Election story – time to redefine The Great Australian Dream

That’s right. Given the state of the housing market, we believe it’s time to recast the dream as being not so much about home ownership but having a secure, well-built and affordable roof over your head! And of course for a lot of people that will be a rental property. 
During this election we’ve been happy to see housing affordability being discussed but have been disappointed to see such a narrow casting of the issues and modesty of the policy offerings.
As this pretty fair ABC article described it, in this federal election, major and minor parties are proposing policies that could:

  • Build tens of thousands of social and affordable homes for rent by low-income earners and welfare recipients
  • Help people buy homes with deposits much lower than the standard 20 per cent
  • See the government become a co-owner of some homes as a way to lower the up-front cost for the buyers
  • Cap mortgage rates at 3 per cent
  • Build 125,000 homes costing just $300,000 each

National Shelter, our national body, has called for genuine Commonwealth leadership in the form of a national housing strategy focused on low-moderate income households and First Nations peoples, overseen by a National Housing Minister with Cabinet clout.

Other key asks include:

  • Increase supply of social housing to 10% of all housing by 2036 OR a minimum net increase of 20,000 new social housing dwellings each year.
  • Review of Commonwealth Rent Assistance (CRA) to ensure that it effectively meets the needs of those in rental stress (increasing the maximum rate of CRA by 50%).
  • Establish a national set of minimum standards to be met by all rental housing to ensure that housing is healthy and energy efficient.
  • Rental law reforms with a minimum set of national standards to provide security, affordability, and safety.
  • Taxation reform: reduce the capital gains tax discount for individuals and trusts and remove the capital gains exemption for homeowners.

Support the development of a national mandatory inclusionary zoning framework where new housing developments must provide social and affordable housing.

We were pleased to attend and support National Shelter last Friday afternoon as it hosted a Federal Election Housing Forum. The forum was ably hosted by National Shelter CEO, Emma Greenhalgh, and moderated by Peter Mares. Refer to this article for an overview of the event
There are close to 1,500 people in the inner west waiting over 10 years for social housing…. Only a large and co-ordinated investment by the Federal and State Governments to build or acquire social housing can address that” – Cathy Callaghan, Shelter NSW Senior Policy Officer for this page 10 article in the Inner West Review by Allison Hore.