Taskforce required for community housing crisis in Victoria
1 April, 2011
The Community Housing Federation of Victoria’s (CHFV) said a report on the housing sector, has emphasised the need for a whole-of-government approach for the community housing sector.
Dubbed ‘Increasing affordable housing through the Victorian community housing sector’, the report from Deloitte Access Economics the sector needed to address the issue of housing affordability within the state.
CHFV CEO Jacqui Watt said there needs to be a whole-of-government approach.
“[The report] should be a catalyst for the community housing sector to sit at the table with the Baillieu Government in the form of a Government Taskforce to address the state’s problem – the housing affordability crisis,” she said.
According to the report the three key areas that need to be addressed in order maximise the growth of affordable housing in Victoria, included; government funding to support private investment; long-term policies for land release, regional development, and supporting infrastructure development; the implementation of a national regulatory framework to reduce cross-jurisdictional barriers for growth.
The report also underlines the importance of helping the community housing sector become self-sustaining in the long term.
“This opens the discussion in regards to direct funding options and policies to assist in raising finance,” Ms Watt said.
“Working towards being self-sustaining as an industry therefore requires more than one government department to solve this issue.”
The report wasn’t all doom and gloom, it also reflected positively on the community housing financial model in terms of delivering value for money on public funds, which was structured in such a way that funding for growth and maintenance of existing stock was financially sustainable in the long term.
Deloitte Access Economics partner, Ric Simes said the community housing sector provided a flexible and effective means of delivering affordable housing to many in need and does so in a manner that compliments public housing.
“In addition, community housing organisations are able to leverage their housing stock as collateral to fund the development of additional homes,” he said.
In regards to the formation of a Government Taskforce, CHFV found successful outcomes required cooperation and hard work to help address the challenges of each partner.