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Improved planning would improve housing affordability

Property Markets / Outlook

Australia / Sydney

Mar 05 2018

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An efficiency dividend of $360 million per year, is the likely outcome if a more streamlined planning system to deal with large-scale residential developments was introduced. 

A new report commissioned by the Property Council of Australia’s Residential Development Council, showed all states needed to improve planning process, with large greenfield or urban renewal projects often referred to state agencies for feedback before decisions are made. 

But referrals to individual agencies could delay the projects, adding to the cost of new housing and curbing economic growth.

Residential Development Council president and Stockland residential boss Andrew Whitson told The Australian a continuous pipeline of supply was essential in tilting the balance firmly back in favour of homebuyers.

The report said ideally just one body to assess a development application, and referrals only be to agencies with a statutory role.

Property Council chief of policy and housing Glenn Byres told The Australian that the Queensland system was the benchmark but could still improve.

“Most other states are a long way from the mark — and crucially, the nation’s biggest market, NSW, has one of the worst systems in the country,” Mr Byres said.

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