Shelter Tas and Anglicare call for a $60m investment in affordable housing by the Tasmanian Government

Key state social service organisations are requesting that the state government invest a $60 million boost to its coffers from additional stamp duty revenue into affordable housing.

Shelter Tas executive officer Pattie Chugg said the unexpected windfall from the state’s recent property boom presented Tasmanians with an opportunity to buy and rent affordable homes.

“While house prices here are less than on the mainland, with Tasmanians earning $100 a week less on average, our housing is expensive for locals,” she said.

She said the state was estimated to be short about 12,500 affordable homes. There are 3900 people waiting to be placed in social housing too, Ms Chugg said.

She said the $60 million could establish an affordable housing fund or go towards meeting anticipated gaps from mooted changes to the National Affordable Housing Agreement.

While house prices here are less than on the mainland, with Tasmanians earning $100 a week less on average, our housing is expensive. - Pattie Chugg

Anglicare Tasmania has backed the proposal.

Meg Webb, of the organisation’s Social Action and Reseach Centre, said state government figures indicated that Tasmania needed an average of 2392 new dwellings each year to meet its supply needs until 2031.

More than 650 of these new homes would need to be low-priced, she said.

“With house prices going up and limited access to social and public housing, people are getting stuck in the highly competitive private rental market,” Ms Webb said.

“Extreme rental stress is a reality for far too many Tasmanians.”

A state government spokesman said the government had already invested $73.5 million into its Affordable Housing Strategy which would offer 1600 households with more affordable housing options and 900 additional homes into the market.  But the government would not be drawn on investing the $60 million windfall into social or affordable housing options in the next budget.

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