Social Housing in New South Wales

Authored by:

Emma Barnes, Chris Hartley, Andrew Wearring

Status: Completed February 2022

The Centre for Social Impact (CSI UNSW) has partnered with the St Vincent de Paul Society NSW to examine the commitments of the New South Wales government since 2016 to develop new social housing dwellings.

Together, they have published two reports to advocate with the NSW government the need to commit more targeted investment towards social housing with the aim of reducing the number of applicants on the NSW social housing list.

Report One: Social Housing in New South Wales - Contemporary Analysis

It is estimated that since 2016 the NSW Government has committed to build 9,386 new social housing properties by 2026, but the research has found that this is insufficient to address the current high numbers of people waiting to access social housing.

The first report, Social Housing in New South Wales: Contemporary Analysis, also found that the financial commitments made by the NSW Government in relation to social housing - including their spending on social housing per capita and the number of social housing dwellings as a proportion of total housing stock - is in decline.

Report Two: Social Housing in New South Wales - Future Impact

The second report, Social Housing in NSW: Future Impact,forecasts the impact of investing in 5,000 new social housing homes, every year for 10 years, with a focus on three key housing indicators:

  • The number of people experiencing homelessness
  • The number of applicants on the NSW Housing Register
  • The number of households experiencing housing stress

The report finds that the investment would be a critical step towards providing safe, secure and affordable housing for people living in NSW.

It also identifies that - given the increasing occurrence of factors that contribute to the need for social housing - the NSW Government's current level of investment is not enough to address the state's social housing needs over the next 10 years to 2031.

The researchers used social housing data to forecast trends and predict levels of need in terms of the expected number of people experiencing housing stress and homelessness, and analysed how the level of demand would impact on the NSW Housing Register with a consideration of the positive difference that an extra 5,000 social housing homes each year would make.

 

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