A core advocacy priority for the Urban Development Institute of Australia has been to seek stronger investment and capability across the Commonwealth Government in understanding housing markets.

Since the National Housing Supply Council was collapsed in 2013, a substantial gap was left in the ability of policy makers at a national level to analyse and respond to supply, demand and affordability challenges.

That’s why UDIA National has consistently called for a replacement body given the central role housing construction plays in the economy and tax, regulatory and planning barriers that inhibit developers.

The good news is that as part of a suite of measures announced since the election, the Morrison Government is effectively reviving the old mandate held by the Housing Supply Council.

The Government has allocated $25 million to the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation to undertake comprehensive research into housing supply, demand and affordability.

This sits alongside NHFIC’s other responsibilities – including the new deposit gap scheme and delivering social and affordable housing in partnership with the private sector and not-for-profits.

The funding and revised mandate are encouraging, and we now look forward to working with Government on shaping the precise details.

Our priorities include:

  • Ensuring industry leadership and dialogue are welcomed to the table, given the National Housing Supply Council benefitted from private sector participation
  • Aligning the population data emerging from the Intergenerational Report, Infrastructure Australia and the new Centre for Population with the housing market analysis
  • Monitoring and reporting on a state-by-state basis on progress against housing targets – and clearly identifying states failing to deliver
  • Introducing financial incentives that link to State and Local performance on planning reform and housing supply
  • Identifying and recommending removal of inefficient red and green tape, as well as statutory charges, that act as a barrier to housing development
  • Facilitating the development of Build-to-Rent, mixed housing and right sizing options for seniors.

The powerful opportunity raised by the revised mandate on housing supply, demand and affordability is a central focus of our current dialogue with the Commonwealth Government.

It will also be a major focus of our engagement with political and policy leaders when the National Council heads to Canberra in November.


Darren Cooper

UDIA National President