Dynamic shift needed on housing

We have a national crisis with a lack of affordable housing across Australia.

Chris Simpson, Democrats spokesperson on Housing Affordability

Attempts by government to address this issue have been underfunded, disorganised and lack any sort of national plan, despite multiple Senate committee reports dating back many years that have called for one.

The Federal Government must work in collaboration with state, territory and local governments. Had it done so a substantial increase in rentable and purchasable homes could have been realised.  

We have previously called for government to borrow at low-interest rates to fund this initiative. The return on investment can be substantiated and realised within the first five years of establishing this strategy. 

A target of 100,000 new affordable homes and 100,000 new social and community housing units is attainable. 

A target of 100,000 new affordable homes and 100,000 new social and community housing units is attainable. 

Our plan also calls for tax reform – changing negative gearing rules so they only apply to investment in new housing. We suggest halving the capital gains tax exemption to discourage speculation on existing housing and long-term house vacancies, currently 4%. See here for the full plan.

In the 2022 budget the Government offered more money for the Home Guarantee Scheme so first home buyers can borrow on a 5 percent deposit and for single parents just 2 percent. However, the price cap is low, interest rates are set to rise and this measure is likely to increase buyer demand and put further pressure on prices. The Government’s offer of funding for 25,000 social housing dwellings/year falls well short of the need, thanks to under-investment over decades.

Einstein is credited with the statement “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result”.

A different result is needed. We could start by using mega and complex project management nationwide to create an innovative, dynamic way forward.

I have worked at the coalface as a workplace trainer and assessor on federal, state and local government funded initiatives. This is entirely possible.

Chris Simpson

Our plan is drawn from the work of experts in social housing, economists, international best practice and innovative strategies that will begin to fix the housing affordability problem. We are a party that has a long history of mature negotiated changes to legislation and eventual outcomes. 

Photo by Pat Whelen on Unsplash

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