Category Archives: Media Release

MEDIA RELEASE: Large scale investment in housing infrastructure will address single biggest cost of living for NSW households

A landmark housing study released today shows NSW needs 212,000 new social housing properties over the next 20 years to meet the current shortfall and meet the needs of people in housing stress as the economy the state’s economy and population grows.

The AHURI study by RMIT and UNSW researchers shows that NSW accounts for 30% of social housing need in Australia, with 141,000 new properties needed in Sydney, and 72,000 in regional NSW by 2036 to address the current shortage and meet the future needs of people who are homeless and, renters on very low incomes who are paying more than 30% of their earnings on housing costs.

According to the needs analysis Sydney has a shortage of 80,000 social housing properties, with a 10,000 shortfall in the Parramatta area alone.  In the rest of NSW there is a shortage of 56,000 social housing properties.

CHIA NSW CEO, Wendy Hayhurst, said the AHURI report showed the investment needed in housing infrastructure to alleviate the single biggest cost of living expense for many people in NSW.

“The state has a thriving economy and we need to make sure that the growth that flows from this includes everyone in NSW,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“We need to invest in good growth and that means recognising that housing, like schools, hospitals, roads or rail is a part of the critical infrastructure that is vital to creating liveable and sustainable towns, cities and communities.

“The AHURI report shows us what we need to do to ensure our lower income earners, whether they are childcare workers, looking after older people, hospital cleaners or households earning a minimum wage, have a safe, secure and affordable roof over their head.

“Yes it comes with what seems a hefty price tag – as does any infrastructure but we will reap the social and economic dividends downstream and let’s face it NSW isn’t without the resources to put into this.

“AHURI has said the most cost effective way forward is through capital grants to community housing providers, either through access to land and/or capital funding, alongside the availability of cheaper finance through the National Housing Finance Investment Corporation (NHFIC) the Federal government has already established.

“Of course it isn’t just the state government’s responsibility, every level of government must step up. Continuing to do nothing isn’t an option if we want to see NSW continue to thrive.

The full study is at

Social housing need in Sydney (rounded to nearest 000)

Sydney suburbs Shortfall 2017 Additional to 2036 Number of social housing homes needed by 2036
Central Coast 7,200 4,400 11,500
Baulkham Hills and Hawkesbury 1,300 600 1,900
Blacktown 5,300 5,200 10,500
City and Inner South 6,100 6,600 12,700
Eastern Suburbs 3,100 2,800 5,900
Inner South West 13,000 9,200 22,100
Inner West 4,800 3,100 7,900
North Sydney and Hornsby 3,800 2,300 6,100
Northern Beaches 1,800 1,300 3,100
Outer South West 3,700 3,700 7,400
Outer West and Blue Mountains 5,000 3,600 8,600
Parramatta 10,600 8,000 18,700
Ryde 2,300 1,700 4,000
South West12 10,000 7,200 17,200
Sutherland 1,600 1,400 3,000
Total 80,000 61,000 141,000


Social Housing need – regional NSW follows

Suburbs Shortfall 2017 Additional to 2036 Number of social housing homes needed by 2036
Capital Region 4,000 1,100 5,100
Central West 4,100 1,200 5,300
Coffs Harbour Grafton 3,800 900 4,700
Far West and Orana 2,200 800 3,000
Hunter Valley 5,800 1,500 7,300
Illawarra 5,000 2,000 6,900
Mid North Coast 5,900 1,400 7,300
Murray 2,500 600 3,100
New England and North West 4,300 1,200 5,500
Newcastle and Lake Macquarie 6,300 2,200 8,500
Richmond Tweed 6,500 1,500 7,900
Riverina 2,900 800 3,700
Southern Highlands and Shoalhaven 2,900 800 3,700
Total 56,000 16,000 72,000

Download PDF: Large scale investment in housing infrastructure will address single biggest cost of living for NSW households

MEDIA RELEASE: Grattan report shows NSW needs urgent housing action

The state’s strong budget outlook is a once in a lifetime opportunity to invest in social and affordable housing to support the thousands of people in NSW struggling with rental stress and homelessness, the state’s not-for-profit housing sector said today.

A Grattan Institute report released today shows NSW has the strongest budget in Australia but the lowest rates of social housing and the highest rates of rental stress and increasing homelessness.

According to the report, NSW has experienced the sharpest decline in social housing levels over the past five years.

The number of low income households (households in the bottom 40% of income earners) experiencing rental stress has increased by 10 per cent, with 1 in 2 low income households in NSW now in rental stress.

Homelessness rates have also increased by 10 .7% – again the highest in the country.

CHIA NSW CEO Wendy Hayhurst said with the state’s budget surplus based largely on rising house prices NSW must urgently commit to investing in policies and programs for families left behind by the boom.

“NSW needs 12,500 social and affordable homes a year to fill the shortfall we have now and meet the needs of our growing population, which is vital if we are to support people in housing stress now and avoid increasing housing unaffordability even further down the track for our children,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“Today’s report also shows once again that we have money here in NSW to invest in housing that market mechanisms can’t provide.

“Real estate prices in Sydney have dropped slightly, but whether a house is 12 or 11 times the average income is immaterial when you’re a renter struggling just to keep a roof over your head and your income hasn’t gone up. Getting together a deposit in these circumstances is nigh impossible.

“The NSW government has some good programs in place but they won’t fill the gap.

“We need investment and planning reforms in NSW to encourage more the growth of not-for-profit social and affordable housing in local communities across NSW and secure future economic growth. Today’s report shows we have the surplus and the money to do it, we just need the will.

“We’re also hoping this report encourages the NSW government to release its Social Housing Strategy as soon as possible.”

Download PDF: Grattan report shows NSW needs urgent housing action

MEDIA RELEASE: More community housing critical as rental stress grows in NSW

More community housing critical as rental stress grows in NSW

Growing rental stress across NSW highlights the urgent need for action from all levels of government to create more social and affordable housing for local communities from the Tweed to the Riverina, the state’s peak not for profit housing body said today.

NSW Federation of Housing Associations CEO, Wendy Hayhurst, said Anglicare’s 2018 Rental Affordability Snapshot released today shows that chronic rental stress has spread its tentacles to almost every area of the state.

“It’s no surprise that yet again there is not a single property affordable for a young family on a minimum wage or government support to rent within 20km of Sydney’s CBD,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“However today’s report from Anglicare shows it’s biting hard in regional areas from the Far North Coast right through to the Northern Tablelands and the Riverina. Even in towns like Tamworth, Wagga and Goulburn a job seeker on Newstart cannot find a single affordable place to rent while they look for work.”

Ms Hayhurst said waiting lists for social housing are up to a decade long in more and more areas of NSW.

She said the state’s community housing sector is ready to grow to meet demand but needs planning reforms and a commitment from all levels of government to afacilitate this growth.

“We need more affordable rental options for households struggling everywhere in our state, particularly people with disability, aged pensioners, job seekers and families struggling to keep a roof over their heads on a minimum wage,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“Our community housing providers already own and manage more than 35,000 properties in 115 council areas of NSW, providing affordable rent, care and support for our tenants and a range of high quality housing models for people in housing stress.

“Councils like Shoalhaven are beginning to develop affordable housing strategies for their local communities. We really need the State Government to release a comprehensive Housing Strategy for the whole of NSW that spells out exactly when, where and how we can deliver the social and affordable housing our local communities need, wherever in NSW they live.

“The Federation will continue to work with local councils, the NSW Government and Opposition in coming months to make it happen.”

The 2018 Everybody’s Home Affordable Housing Conference on June 27 and 28 will highlight the current and growing shortfall of accessible and affordable housing in Australia.

Media contact: Jenny Stokes 0407 504 280

MEDIA RELEASE: NSW community housing sector joins national campaign to fix our broken housing system

NSW community housing sector joins national campaign to fix our broken housing system

The state’s peak not-for-profit community housing body today joined hundreds of a community, housing, and homelessness organisations in calling on all political parties to support a plan to fix Australia’s broken housing system.

NSW Federation of Housing Associations CEO, Wendy Hayhurst, said housing stress is affecting local communities in Sydney and NSW more than any other part of Australia.

“The price of our state’s booming economy is that our house prices are continuing to soar in most parts of NSW, which means that rents are and homeownership realistically is now beyond any worker on a lower income or even average wage,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“Homelessness in NSW grew by 37% in just five years and is now the worst in the country, with more than 60,000 people in need of a safety net waiting for social housing.

“We need the NSW Government and the Federal government to work with the community and housing sectors to really fix our housing system for everyone – from renters, to home buyers to people struggling to find a roof over their head.”

Ms Hayhurst said Everybody’s Home has outlined five key measures for make sure everybody in NSW has a home.

Analysis for Everybody’s Home found that Australia will need 500,000 social and affordable homes by 2026 – many in NSW.

She said the state’s growing not for profit community housing sector was critical part of the solution.

“One of the biggest causes of homelessness in NSW is the lack of social and affordable housing. Too many renters are struggling in the private rental market and need affordable options. And many first home buyers can’t save for a deposit if they are paying private rents they simply cannot afford.

“We need to set out a clear National Strategy as they have in Canada for how we can meet growing need for affordable rental homes for nurses, aged care workers, and other vital people essential to keeping our local communities running.

“Government support, beyond increasing supply is absolutely critical. At a state level we need action through Inclusionary zoning and affordable housing target and incentives to trigger private and not for profit investment into affordable housing.”

Find out about the campaign at

Media contact: Jenny Stokes 0478 504 280

MEDIA RELEASE: New polling shows 2 in 3 Australians want action on housing

Federal and state governments are failing the test of providing secure, affordable housing with two in three Australians saying all political parties must do more to address housing affordability. The polling has been released to coincide with the housing, homelessness and community sectors uniting in Canberra today to launch a new national campaign aimed at rebalancing the housing system for ordinary Australians. Key points from poll: • 62% of Australians think the Federal Government is not doing enough about housing affordability • 60% think the Opposition needs to do more • 49% of Coalition voters believe the Federal Government is not doing enough, and • 57% of Labor voters believe the Opposition should do more.

Everybody’s Home campaign Spokesperson, Kate Colvin said housing affordability is clearly a critical issue that all parties were failing to address. “Making sure everyone has a home is a top order priority for Australians but it is not matched by action from our political leaders. That needs to change,” Ms Colvin said. “Genuine home buyers are missing out to people building investment portfolios. Growing competition for rental properties is driving up prices and rental insecurity. “There’s a chronic shortage of social and affordable rental options, and it’s causing record levels of homelessness. “Both the major parties have a very poor report card when it comes to housing. The Everybody’s Home campaign will make sure they have no choice but to start taking genuine action instead of more thought bubbles and piecemeal measures.

“We need to address the entire housing system to make sure every Australian has a safe, secure roof over their head whether they’re buying, renting or at risk of homelessness.” Everybody’s Home will launch at the National Press Club in Canberra today. It aims to unite Australians behind a real focus on solutions that will ensure everybody has the security of a home. In the lead up to the Federal Election the campaign will roll out a roadmap for how we can fix every part of our housing system – from redressing the balance for home homeowners to triggering large scale investment from superannuation funds in affordable rental homes.

Media enquiries: Jenny Stokes 0478 504 280