Boosting supply is critical to success of Labor’s Regional Home Buyer Support Scheme says UDIA
UDIA applauds Labor’s announcement today of an annual 10,000 allocation under a Regional First Home Buyer Loan guarantee scheme to help regional Australians buy their first home. This solid policy will help tackle the regional housing crisis, but this must come together with a boost to regional housing supply or there will be nothing to buy or build.
“The Regional First Home Buyer Support Scheme is a great initiative which will provide genuine support for the regions struggling under the weight of increased demand, but it will fall short if it is not coupled with the fast tracking of development ready land in these areas,” said Max Shifman UDIA President.
“We are pleased to see the Labor Party adopting some of the ideas in UDIA’s 2022 Federal Election Platform, and the inclusion of a regular price cap review is also well-considered. These positive ideas need to be supported by measures that boost supply pipelines across the entire housing spectrum, preparing for expected population growth in the regions by clearing away inefficient barriers to dwelling delivery,” he said.“One of the greatest issues impacting housing affordability and new supply is the need to provide enabling infrastructure in urban and regional areas to turn vacant land into development ready land. In regional areas the root cause is the lack of zoned and developable land, not a lack of vacant space.” “UDIA’s State of the Land 2022 forecasts sales of new lots could plummet as much as 43% this year but will be sold at increasing prices, because the declining sales is caused by a lack of supply, not a lack of demand,” he said “Unless we boost supply, the looming affordability crisis will be overwhelming – particularly for first homeowners, but also affordable rentals and vulnerable Australians relying on subsidised housing,” he said “The measures in UDIA’s Federal Election Campaign Platform A Plan for Prosperity released last week are mostly inexpensive but they are necessary to ensure ideas like regional first home-owner grants and other support measures like this are not hobbled at the post,” said Shifman. UDIA also suggests that the scheme be enhanced by focusing on new dwelling construction as a means to help supercharge Australia’s recovery from the pandemic. NHFIC data shows it can take up to six years for new supply to reach the market, and this problem will only continue to grow if significant reforms are not implemented now. “We need to fix planning systems and boost new housing supply now before affordability issues overwhelm the market and Government’s ability to provide housing support.” “We warmly welcome this innovative approach and look forward to working with all political leaders to solve the affordability challenge across the housing spectrum,” added Max Shifman.
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