In lodging its submission to the Economics Legislation Committee inquiry into housing bills, Master Builders Australia today called on the Senate not to miss an opportunity for sensible reform in helping to achieve the housing needs for the future.
The inquiry into the Housing Australia Future Fund Bill 2023, National Housing Supply and Affordability Council Bill 2023, and Treasury Laws Amendments (Housing Measures No. 1) Bill 2023 give effect to the Government’s housing election commitments to establish the $10 billion Housing Australia Future Fund, National Housing Supply and Affordability Council and Housing Australia.
Master Builders Australia CEO Denita Wawn said the combination of the legislation provides the opportunity to embed housing as a core infrastructure priority for the Federal Government.
“Master Builders supports all three Bills as the next step in the government’s broader agenda for housing reform.
“We urge the Opposition and crossbench Senators to take a pragmatic approach for sensible reform.
“Finding solutions to the issue of affordable housing is imperative as it poses one of the country’s biggest challenges, and we must work together to address it.
“Master Builders forecasts new housing over the next five years will fall short of the 200,000 homes needed annually until 2026-27.
“We acknowledge the Housing Australia Future Fund Bill is a measured next step to further develop a national social and affordable housing fund whilst operating in a capacity-constrained market.
“However, to meet the additional 800,000 dwellings needed by 2035, the size of the Fund’s capital investment should be expanded from $10 billion to $20 billion.
“It’s critical that we address housing affordability and supply instead of prolonging action and allowing further deterioration in the market,” said Ms Wawn.
With the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement and Commonwealth rental assistance schemes injecting around $6.9 billion annually into housing, the $10 billion investment into the Housing Australia Future Fund should be in addition to and not a replacement of these schemes.
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