Unified affordable housing policy will woo more capital

Access to social and affordable housing is a core part of our social fabric.

Increasing rents and lack of affordable housing creates a huge divide in our community, particularly in markets such as Sydney and Melbourne where prices have risen strongly in the past five years.

This issue is only getting worse – particularly the case for people earning low to moderate incomes – and prompting much debate and research, including the Committee for Economic Development of Australia’s housing report last week. It’s no surprise given the gravity of the issue. For example, the waiting list for social housing in NSW alone is 60,000.

Westpac has committed more than $1.2 billion in funding to the sector to date and is keen to do more, particularly on a larger scale.

But in order to commit the vast sums of money required to overcome this issue, the private sector needs an over-arching, coordinated policy framework, inclusive of relevant subsidies and a consistent pipeline.

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