There has been a call for superannuation to be ‘unlocked’ and used to fund affordable housing.
“Housing and finance experts are calling on the Commonwealth Government support an independent finance body that would give not-for-profit community housing providers the size and security they need to attract large-scale investment from Australian superannuation funds,” said a statement by the NSW Federation of Housing Associations.
“The Affordable Housing Financial Intermediary model would be not-for-profit and independent, accessing wholesale investors through the Australian bond market.”
“It would aggregate the debt of individual housing providers, allowing them to borrow at a scale necessary to unlock investment from superannuation funds at low cost over the long term. ”
NSW Federation of Housing Associations CEO Wendy Hayhurst said large scale institutional investment was “critical” to establishing community housing as the third tier of the Australian housing market, alongside private and public housing.
“All Governments have made it clear they do not want to take on more debt, so leveraging private funding makes perfect sense,” said Ms Hayhurst.
“Australian superfunds have $1.5 trillion tied up in capital. The not-for-profit superannuation sector alone can provide access to $200 billion in investment.”
“Submissions from super funds to the Federal Government Affordable Housing Working Group said they were eager to provide a reliable long term funding sources for community housing with Commonwealth support to create the necessary financial structures.”
“Countries around the world have embraced non-profit housing as a critical component of a well functioning housing market but it’s a sector that is still under developed here in Australia.”
“There’s huge potential for it to grow and be a real solution to housing affordability.”