The Federal Treasurer has signalled the May budget will have a range of policy measures designed to tackle housing affordability, both for renters and for first home buyers. This includes the possible creation of a new Affordable Housing Finance Corporation to inject hundreds of millions of dollars investment in community housing.
In addition, the government has signalled that a separate pool of government money for affordable housing and homelessness services, the National Affordable Housing Agreement (NAHA), could be scrapped with a savings of about $1.3 billion a year in payments to the states.
It has been suggested that the Affordable Housing Finance Corporation could make use of a ‘bond aggregator’ model of investment. Independent research by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) suggests this investment model could provide beneficial longer-term, lower-interest loans to the community housing sector enabling the development more social housing.
Shelter WA spokesperson Stephen Hall welcomed the announcement of ‘bond aggregator’ model and Affordable Housing Finance Corporation which would manage these funds.
“It is terrific that the Federal Government is taking a leadership role in relation to leveraging private capital into the community housing sector,” Mr Hall said.
“Shelter WA has advocated for this, amongst a suite of reforms, as it is a model that has worked internationally. “
“Shelter WA is concerned that the Federal Government see this as a replacement for public funding for services under the NAHA, which is vital to the provision of housing and homelessness services in WA.”
“This is an innovative model for Australia, but must be seen as a supplement to a renewed NAHA, and not a replacement for it” said Mr Hall.
Media Contact: Stephen Hall, (08) 9325 6660 or 0408 426 263