NSW has “released” land sufficient for 6,600 new houses. The Premier claims that there is a building boom underway in Western Sydney and is looking to extend the first home buyers grant to new properties worth less than $750,000. The data about a boom tells a different story
Talk of a boom is decidedly relative. A recent upsurge means house building is running at only two thirds its level in the 1980s. The population has grown considerably since then and demand for housing even more so given the costrrained supply forced upon potential buyers that successive NSW governments have opted for.
Moreover, closely related to the lack of buyers is the price of housing in western Sydney. At a minimum of $500,000 and usually much more prices are massively inflated by the land shortage which is a matter solely within the power of the government to repair.
Land on the periphery of Sydney would sell at under $100,000 per serviced block if the government planners allowed sufficient land to be built upon. Instead it goes for at least $350,000. The Premier, in issuing such self-congratulatory statements, is surely aware of this. But instead of policies that would reduce house prices by at least $150,000 and probably $250,000 he offers a palliative of a $15,000 subsidy to selected new buyers
Perhaps, anxious to protect existing house owners, governments hide behind notions that there is a genuine shortage of land or that the infrastructure would be too costly or even that “urban sprawl” is a problem. None of these can be supported by the facts.
Meanwhile Australia is among the most expensive housing markets in the world in spite of the ample land on theperiphery of all our major cities
By the way Victoria is not much better than NSW