Sydney home building narrowly misses target

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Home building in Sydney almost met former state government targets in the third quarter, but inconsistent growth means more affordable housing could still be a long time coming in some parts of the city. 

The McKell Institute’s Quarterly Homes Monitor showed 5,559 dwelling completions for the third quarter, siting just below the target of 5,825 new dwellings per quarter set by the former NSW Government’s Sydney 2036 Metropolitan Strategy. 

Institute executive director Peter Bentley said the surge in home building could help boost the city’s affordability. 

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“It’s no secret that Sydney’s housing affordability is among the very worst in the world. One of the keys to improving Sydney’s housing affordability is increasing our housing supply,” Bentley said. 

Melbourne is “streets ahead” of Sydney in terms of new home starts, Bentley added, which has led to more affordable median house prices and rents in Victoria’s capital. 

Despite the improvement, Bentley said there was a disparity in new home starts across the Sydney region. The Inner West and CBD saw strong numbers, but the city’s South West, East and Inner North did not reach their goals, with the South West and Inner North falling 35% below target. 

“Taking a wider view, since 2006, only Eastern Sydney and Sydney’s North have met or exceeded their Sydney 2036 starts, with every other region falling short,” said Sean Macken, a McKell Institute fellow. “The South West is a perennial underperformer – falling 65% short of its target over this longer period. The Inner North and North West also languish a long way behind.”

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