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Supporting Tasmanians in Need with More Affordable Housing

25 May 2017

Jacquie Petrusma, Minister for Human Services

A key priority of the Hodgman Liberal Government is supporting Tasmanians in need, which is why the Tasmanian Government will continue to invest in our $73.5 million Affordable Housing Action Plan in the 2017-18 Budget.

The Affordable Housing Action Plan will deliver affordable housing options for 1600 Tasmanian households over four years, on top of around 1000 families housed in social housing each year and the over 3500 families assisted by Private Rental Assistance through Housing Connect.

With the Budget back in balance, the State Government is Building Tasmania’s Future by investing in essential services and job creation, committing $31.2 million towards providing affordable housing for Tasmanians in 2017/18.

Major projects to be undertaken as part of the 2017-18 Budget include:

  • 8 additional units for young people at the Thyne House Youth Supported Accommodation Facility in Launceston, to help youth to re-engage with education, training or a job.
  • 9 units at the new Youth at Risk Response Centre at Moonah, as well as an additional $800 000 a year to run the centre for homeless or at risk of homelessness youth by providing a safe and secure place for young people to live under the supervision of a live-in manager.
  • 25 units at the new Devonport Youth Supported Accommodation Facility, which is adjacent to 23 serviced lots which will provide for affordable housing in a prime location, as well as a new group home for people living with disability.
  • A new Hobart Women’s Shelter, which will provide a 37 percent increase on existing crisis accommodation.
  • Commencement of landlord initiatives designed to help vulnerable Tasmanians get into the private rental market; and
  • Commencement of up to 65 units under the Regional Supply Initiative.

The Government also understands it can be hard for low to medium income Tasmanians to break into the housing market, which is why the Tasmanian Government is making over

$6 million available through the HomeShare program for a home deposit or loan for eligible low to medium income Tasmanians.

HomeShare is a shared equity scheme where people initially purchase up to 70 per cent of a property, with the Director of Housing owning the other 30 per cent. During 2017-18 more than 100 affordable housing lots will be available in Tasmania as part of the State Government’s Affordable Housing Action Plan, and these lots will be available for people to purchase and build on through HomeShare.

The 2017-18 Budget will also see $26.5 million invested in new and upgraded public housing for Tasmanians.  As part of this investment, $12 million will be spent on social housing in major urban centres to replace old and damaged stock with brand new, energy efficient homes especially suitable for older people and those living with disability.

Key maintenance expenditure includes:

  • $2.0 million to be spent on energy efficiency improvements in Housing Tasmania properties.
  • Replacing a range of old heaters with heat pumps in properties, including Pure Heat wall heaters and gas heating, as well as removing Labor’s compulsory gas heater policy; and
  • An additional $2.0 million to undertake window modifications to ensure that all Housing Tasmania properties comply with current regulations regarding ventilation and security. This will see windows replaced in around 200 Housing Tasmania properties which will further increase their energy efficiency.

The Tasmanian Government knows there is still a long way to go, and that is why we are Building Tasmania’s Future - to ensure more Tasmanians feel the benefits of a stronger economy.