Articles on Affordable housing

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Driven by higher returns on their equity, debt-financed investors are dominating the housing market and shaping its growth. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Investors are exploiting returns on debt financing to muscle out home buyers

New research shows the actual returns on equity for housing investors are higher than most people realise. This helps explain why investors are able to out-compete other home buyers.
Households are not competing on equal terms in the private rental market – their perceptions of insecurity vary according to their means, location and reasons for renting. April Fonti/AAP

The insecurity of private renters – how do they manage it?

Private renters' security of tenure in Australia has less legal protection than in other countries with high private rental rates. A new study reveals mixed responses to this state of uncertainty.
Restoring and expanding Australia’s run-down public housing stocks will need an increase in funding on top of the reforms in the budget. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

Budget 2017 charts new social and affordable housing agenda

The budget is pushing for a much-needed reboot of the social housing sector. What it isn't offering is extra funding to renew and expand run-down housing stocks.
Unless the demand pressures are eased, first home buyers are still likely to be crowded out of the market. Sam Mooy/AAP

Budget needs a sharper policy scalpel to help first home buyers

The budget acknowledges the crisis of affordability for first home buyers, but fails to do enough about demand pressures on prices to put home ownership back within their reach.
Having embraced expert advice on bond aggregation to finance housing, Scott Morrison needs to ensure the Commonwealth commits to long-term investment and cooperation. Julian Smith/AAP

Bond aggregator helps build a more virtuous circle of housing investment

The bond aggregator by itself cannot create a housing development pipeline. It needs co-investment from government to make it feasible.
Are the millennials doomed to be nomads, locked out of the home-ownership market forever? sharon_k/flickr

Off the plan: shelter, the future and the problems in between

Owning a home has deep cultural and economic connotations. A home owner is a member of a street, a community. They are a successful adult human. They own a piece of the pie, the dream.
Migrants can no longer afford to live in the ‘gateway’ suburbs that once helped them to leave the ranks of the ‘disadvantaged’ and feel at home in their new country. Jack Wright/flickr

New to Australia? Good luck! Migrants can no longer afford ‘gateway’ suburbs

With the winding back of government support for housing, 'gateway' suburbs that have in the past accepted and supported recent immigrants are becoming increasingly unaffordable.
Governments alone cannot bridge the gaps and support affordable housing for seniors. shutterstock

Social impact investment can help retirees get the housing and care they need

Any significant decline in home ownership or equity in a home impacts higher care needs: older people will not have an asset to sell to fund the bonds required to enter aged care accommodation.
Treasurer Scott Morrison is eyeing bond aggregation as a way to finance social housing, but government funding is still needed under that model. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Affordable housing, finger-pointing politics and possible policy solutions

In the second part of our review of what The Conversation experts have to say about housing, we focus on affordability, social housing and what government can do about a growing crisis.
The Turnbull government’s line that supply is the key to affordability finds little support among housing experts. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

What housing issues should the budget tackle? This is what our experts say

Housing experts writing for The Conversation largely agree on the government policies that are causing negative distortions in the market and the wider economy. And supply is not the key concern.
Impact investing emerged in 2007 out of global discussions on how to mobilise more capital to tackle societal problems. shutterstock

Explainer: the rise of social impact investing

Impact investments are designed to achieve a measurable social or environmental – as well as financial – return.
The financialisation of housing has become central to wealth creation in Australian households. Andrey_Popov from www.shutterstock.com

Explainer: the financialisation of housing and what can be done about it

We now value the house as a wealth builder, not just a place to live in and raise a family. The result is a distorted investment market that makes home ownership and rental unaffordable.
To meet the needs of lower-income households, housing should be both affordable and located near public transport and other services. Graeme Bartlett/Wikimedia

What a difference a month makes, but Victoria can still do more to get housing and planning right

Victoria has been lagging behind other states in developing an affordable housing strategy. Now that one has been released, how well does it meet the needs of households on lower incomes?
Generation X and Y are equally, if not more aggressive than baby boomers when investing in property. Chris Devers/Flickr

Business Briefing: how the attitudes of the next generation are changing the property market

Business Briefing: how the attitudes of the next generation are changing the property market. The Conversation18.5 MB (download)
There's been a shift in attitudes to the property market over generations, from owning a home as a right, to owning a home as a commodity.
Scott Morrison has recently broadened the range of affordable housing policy options he’s considering, and moving beyond simplistic supply-side solutions would be a positive development. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Australia’s almost a world leader in home building, so that isn’t a fix for affordability

The housing supply solution our leaders are advocating will only work if affordability is simply a problem of supply. In fact, Australia is almost a world leader in rates of new housing production.
New South Wales is the state that has suffered the biggest fall in available public housing stock since 2009. This has led to protests. Teresa Parker/AAP

Australia needs to reboot affordable housing funding, not scrap it

Although the federal-state agreement does it inadequately and lacks transparency, an enduring program of federal funding for operational expenses is essential to sustain the social housing system.
Any attempt to improve security for tenants should not deprive them, or their landlords, of the flexibility that many also want. David Crosling/AAP

Rental insecurity: why fixed long-term leases aren’t the answer

Any attempt to improve security for tenants should not deprive them, or their landlords, of the flexibility that many also want. The key problem is landlords' ability to give notice without a reason.

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