24 May, 2012
$104m investment to support affordable housing
Budget 2012 clearly signals the Government’s commitment to supporting affordable housing and the growth of non-government housing providers, Housing Minister Phil Heatley says.
“We’re committed to delivering the right houses to the right people in the right places,” he says. “Working with non-government providers, the Government is committed to improving housing affordability and providing assistance to households in need.”
The Budget delivers reprioritised operating funding of $104.1 million to support the growth of non-government housing providers over the next three years.
The funding will be provided through the Social Housing Unit, which the Government established last year to support the provision of social housing.
“This will be used to trial greater innovation, diversity and scale in the social housing sector,” Mr Heatley says. “It delivers on one of our commitments to the sector – certainty of multi-year funding so it can embark on longer-term, more ambitious projects.
“It also provides flexibility in terms of how the fund is used. We want the housing sector to come to us with solid proposals that will deliver solid outcomes in a realistic timeframe.
“We are working with the sector to use our $15 billion investment in state houses and $3 billion of annual subsidies more effectively to house people in need.
“History shows us that every dollar we invest with non-government providers delivers two or three times as much social housing as Government investment alone,” Mr Heatley says.
So far this year the Social Housing Fund has approved 15 housing projects valued at nearly $90 million, with more to come.
“Funding providers through the Social Housing Unit allows us to get alongside the sector and support a wider range of housing providers and projects,” Mr Heatley says.
The Government will also work with councils to improve housing affordability for all New Zealanders.