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The NSW Government has delivered some social and affordable housing funding in today’s Budget, but there is more work to do to address the significant housing issues in NSW.

The Budget includes $812 million over four year for social and affordable housing construction and maintenance, but how much extra housing stock this will inject into the state remains to be seen.

Pre-COVID, the chronic shortage of affordable housing across NSW meant at least 50,000 people were on the social housing waiting list, and the COVID recession is only going to make housing stress even worse.

NCOSS CEO, Joanna Quilty said while the new funding was welcomed, more investment was needed to support the most vulnerable and boost the residential construction industry.

“The NSW Government has not delivered the significant investment in social and affordable housing that is needed across the state,” Ms Quilty said.

“While increased funding for social housing maintenance will be welcomed by the community housing sector, overall, this does not go far enough to actually add the necessary amounts of new stock into the system.

“The Government missed a golden opportunity to support more people in desperate need and deliver a much-needed boost to the residential construction industry.

“Without urgent action and significant investment, what we will see is more individuals and families forced into precarious, inadequate and unsafe situations.”

According to modelling commissioned by NCOSS and other peak organisations, the COVID-19 recession will lead to more homelessness, overcrowding and housing stress.

This includes by June 2021:

  • More than 9,000 more people in NSW will be homeless – a rise of 24.0 per cent in the homeless population.
  • Some regions in NSW will experience a 40.5 per cent increase in homelessness.
  • The number of NSW families experiencing housing stress will increase by over 88,000 or 24.3 per cent.

In terms of the absolute increase in the number of people experiencing homelessness, the largest increases are expected to be in the Sydney area, including:

Location Increase in homelessness by June 2021
Sydney - City & Inner South2,465
Sydney – Parramatta941
Sydney - Eastern Suburbs799
Newcastle & Lake Macquarie562
Sydney - Inner South West468


Media contact: Nick Trainor 0407 078 138