Home Reconciliation Chief Executive | Challenges ahead for ‘1,000,000 homes by 2029’

Chief Executive | Challenges ahead for ‘1,000,000 homes by 2029’

  • May 31, 2023
  • by Mike Zorbas
Property Council of Australia Chief Executive Mike Zorbas outlines the obstacles to increased housing supply.

1.3 million homes down on where we should be.* Mainly due to a lack of density in the ‘missing middle’. No wonder we need a national housing accord.

That’s the view of former RBA economist Tony Richards this week. Hat tip the AFR.

The deficit numbers are eye watering. 383,107 homes in New South Wales, 352,292 in Queensland, 282,694 in Victoria, 160,397 in Western Australia, 102,321 in South Australia, 34,146 in Tasmania, 14,385 in Canberra and 8,504 in the Northern Territory.

That’s a lot of supply frustrated by the failure of state governments to hold themselves or local governments to account. A failure to design the right housing approval systems and a failure to champion housing as the social infrastructure the nation needs.

It is always another level of government’s problems, too many skilled migrants from overseas wanting to add to our economy and help us fill labour shortages, the fault of negative gearing (actually directly adds to new supply) or the free market (‘rent capping’ also causes housing supply reduction).

Government’s talking about taxes would be funny, but depending on your state, government taxes are 20-40 per cent of the cost of every single new home in Australia. Why not start there?

And it’s the biggest states that are the biggest problem.

As I said to the Daily Telegraph on Monday – NSW wins the wooden spoon for housing supply. They will have to house a large chunk of the 1.5 million people who will arrive in Australia over the next five years, and they are way behind the starting line.

And yet the Victorian Government seems intent on similar outcomes with last week’s flippant tax on mum and dad investors that is a direct disincentive for investment in new homes.

If the Australian Government wants to hit the million homes target, they will need to throw some truth bombs at their state colleagues in the months ahead.

*Based on housing production in the twenty years to 2001 vs 2021.

National Reconciliation Week

Reconciliation is a continuous journey. The theme for this year’s National Reconciliation Week, “Be a Voice for Generations“, pays homage to the struggles of previous generations who fought for justice and recognition in Australia. It invites us all to reflect on our role in addressing the ongoing task of reconciliation, ensuring a better future for generations to come.

Like many of our members, the Property Council is on that reconciliation journey. This year, the Property Council completed our Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan and are now exploring our next steps. This includes finalising our First Nations Advisory Group to ensure the Property Council embeds First Nations voices in the work we do.

With a workforce of more than 1.4 million, the property industry is an important partner in advancing the economic empowerment of First Nations peoples. Each building we construct also stands on land that has been cared for by First Nations peoples for countless generations, making it a potential avenue for expressing respect and celebration of more than sixty thousand years of culture.

This week, let’s remember the extraordinarily difficult challenges that face many Indigenous communities and pause to consider the role that each of us plays in contributing to solutions.