Turnbull Government to axe national affordable housing scheme
THE Turnbull government is set to scrap a national affordable housing scheme after it failed to deliver any meaningful outcomes to ease Australia’s housing crisis.
The National Housing Affordability Agreement, which has cost the Federal Government almost $9 billion since it was launched in 2009 by the Rudd Government, will be axed in the May budget, The Australian reports.
Instead of the public housing stock rising since the agreement was launched, figures released in the 2017 Report on Government Services last month show the supply has actually gone backwards by 16,000 homes.
And 20 per cent of the existing housing stock was now considered in an unacceptable state, while 8 per cent was uninhabitable.
“We believe it’s crucial that every dollar of spending on affordable housing programs increases the number and availability of public and social housing stock,” Assistant Minister to the Treasurer Michael Sukkar told The Australian.
“Clearly, this objective has not been met.”
“Given the nearly $9bn of payments from the Commonwealth to the states and territories under this agreement since 2009, it’s understandable to question the value of this spend, given affordable housing outcomes have got worse over that time.”
Axing the agreement would save the Government $1.5 billion a year.
It’s understood the Government is considering other measures to stimulate the supply of affordable housing, including government-backed bond scheme to stimulate investment from the private sector.