Housing affordability

Housing affordability is a major issue affecting many Australians and there is no silver bullet.

To support Australian households, the Government has a comprehensive plan that will improve outcomes across the housing spectrum – from the homeless and those who depend on social housing, to first home buyers and older Australians looking to downsize.

Supporting home ownership
The Government is making changes that will help more people realise their goal of home ownership.
We will empower first home buyers to save for their first home by allowing them to build a deposit inside their superannuation. They will be able to access generous tax concessions to build more savings faster.

From 1 July 2017, Australians can contribute up to $15,000 per year in voluntary contributions, up to $30,000 in total that can be withdrawn for a first home deposit. Withdrawals will be allowed from 1 July 2018. Couples will be able to both access the scheme and combine savings for a single deposit.

People’s contributions and earnings will be taxed at only 15 per cent rather than marginal tax rates and withdrawals taxed at marginal tax rates less a 30 per cent offset. Contributions must be made from within existing caps.

To help free up larger homes for younger families, from 1 July 2018, older Australians considering downsizing will be given the flexibility to contribute up to $300,000 from the sale proceeds of their home into superannuation as a non-concessional contribution.

Building more homes
A key factor in easing housing affordability now, and into the future, is building more homes.
The Government will boost the supply of housing by working with state and territory governments to set housing supply targets and facilitate planning and zoning reform. This will be achieved through:

  •  Working with State and Territory governments to introduce a new National Housing and Homelessness Agreement, with the requirement for concrete outcomes, which will increase the supply of new housing for all Australians across the housing spectrum, particularly those most in need. The new Agreement will include an additional $375.3 million of Commonwealth funding to help people who are homeless and those in need of crisis accommodation. This will provide greatercertainty to those organisations that provide frontline homelessness services and will continue to prioritise people affected by domestic violence and vulnerable young Australians.
  •  Establishing a $1 billion National Housing Infrastructure Facility based on the program set up in the United Kingdom, to work with States and Territories to fund deals with local governments to remove infrastructure impediments to developing new homes and apartments on selected sites.
  •  Making under-utilised and surplus Commonwealth land available for housing development to create opportunities for developers and others in the community to propose better use of the land, including for housing. As a first step, 127 hectares of surplus Defence land in Maribyrnong in Melbourne will be made available for housing. This could support up to 6,000 new homes less than 10 kilometres from the CBD.