National Shelter media release — 31 May 2012

National Shelter, the peak council for affordable housing policy, has backed calls for an Affordable Housing Bond to galvanise institutional investment.

According to National Shelter, an instrument to secure investments is the missing link in the affordable housing picture.

Chairperson of National Shelter, Adrian Pisarski, supports the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) assessment of $7 billion annual investment required:

‘Despite heroic government investment recently, we are still losing social housing market share and governments alone may never be able to finance the required investment.’

‘The current tax arrangements favour individual investors over institutions, but only institutions can provide the scale required.’

‘We have trillions of dollars of Australian super not being used to fix our own housing shortage; this proposal is a vital element.’

The bond proposal, referred to today in the Australian Financial Review, adds value to the current reform agenda utilising not-for-profits to develop a range of housing types.

These include the National Rental Affordability Scheme and capital from the social housing stimulus investment, to transform a broken public housing system.

‘We need to return our affordable housing sector to a viable footing and let loose the creativity and vigour of the NFP sector and solve this massive problem.’

We receive calls daily from those failed by the market yet not able to secure property in the public system, and we will all suffer the cost in the long run if this issue remains unresolved.

‘Institutional investment, continued government investment and system reform are required urgently to offer hope to the hundreds of thousands on wait lists or impoverished by crippling rent.’

Adrian Pisarski, Chairperson: tel: (07) 3831 5900, 0417 975 270; email:

Joanna Carson, Communications Officer: 0418 718 584: email: