Regional housing report analysis shows Illawarra-Shoalhaven must push on with housing delivery


Findings of research conducted by GYDE Consulting for the Property Council of Australia have shown mixed results on dwelling approvals in the Illawarra Shoalhaven as the region battles increased housing prices and tight buyer and rental markets.

Property Council’s Illawarra Regional Director Michelle Guido said the results showed the Illawarra Shoalhaven overall was tracking well to meet housing targets, but now is not the time to take our foot off the pedal.

“As demand increases, we need to continue supporting the delivery of diverse types of housing right across the region especially in light of increased population migration to the region and the after-effects of COVID,” Ms Guido said.

“Councils need extra resources and support from the Government to help them with planning approvals and increasing the supply of housing across the region, as there is a risk of delivery housing falling short against projections outlined in the research.”

Ms Guido said the South Coast needed even further support from the NSW Government to deliver critical housing, especially in the Shoalhaven where the limited availability of housing for key workers is extremely problematic.

“In the Shoalhaven, we are seeing steady completions however this is slightly below the delivery requirement for the five-year period from 2016-2021,” she said.

“With the Nowra/Bomaderry greenfield areas set to boom over the coming years, more needs to be done by the NSW Government right now and in the short to medium term to support the delivery of housing for workers.

“Right across the region, there are housing supply shortages in both the buyers and renters’ markets and housing completions are not as high as we would like to see them, so we need all the support we can get from the NSW Government to support local councils to deliver the critical housing and infrastructure we urgently need.”


Regional Housing Analysis for the Illawarra-Shoalhaven concluded:

The Illawarra-Shoalhaven Region projected growth requires additional new housing supply to be maintained, with DPE projecting that 58,000 dwellings will be required in the Region between 2016 and 2041.

At present, much of the existing housing stock in the Region is comprised of detached, three- or four-bedroom dwellings, with Wollongong providing a higher number of smaller, apartment dwellings.

Over the past five years, housing delivery in the Region has been strong. Completions have generally surpassed the projected demand for 2041 with only two years failing to meet the projected demand. Broadly, the Region delivered infill and detached development.

Housing approvals indicate future development may include the delivery of slightly more multi-unit dwellings however, detached dwelling approvals remain dominant.

Housing is largely being approved in a combination of infill and greenfield areas, including existing centres and identified greenfield release areas.

The supply and delivery of housing in the Region broadly aligns with the stated goals and directions in the Illawarra Shoalhaven Regional Plans 2036 and 2041.

Improved metrics to measure housing diversity and affordability are required to better assess the performance of the Region with each of the LGAs within the Region experiencing slightly different trends in housing supply and delivery.

The Region as a whole is able to balance these differences, with some LGAs delivering more dwellings than the projected demand, while others producing an undersupply of dwellings.

While ideally all LGAs are meeting the projected demand, the four LGAs working in tandem allow the Region as a whole to remain well positioned to meet the projected demand to 2041.

However, this is indicative of an agile strategic planning framework that needs to be expanded to ensure housing supply can be scaled up or down to meet changes in demand and increases in population. This will be particularly critical with a continued strong demand for housing in the Illawarra Shoalhaven.

The ongoing approval and delivery of diverse dwelling types right across the region will be key to meeting this demand and ensuring the Illawarra-Shoalhaven continues to thrive, providing suitable job and housing opportunities for people.


Media contact:  Aidan Green | E [email protected]