More than a third of Canberra’s housing stock is sitting vacant, a result of the lack of affordable rental stock and a lack of developers investing in housing, according to the Canberra Housing Corporation.
Key points:In February, the ACT’s housing market was in freefall, as the ACT Government faced the worst housing crisis in its historyThe ACT’s Minister for Housing, John Williams, has warned the ACT will struggle to deal with the crisis in the long-termThe ACT Housing Corporation is calling on the Government to act now to protect the region’s housing supplyWhile there are no immediate signs of a crisis, a shortage of affordable rentals in Canberra and a growing number of vacancies in the ACT city have been making it difficult for families to find a place to live.
The ACT has recorded nearly 4,000 vacancies in Canberra’s CBD alone, according the Canberra Government.
This is an increase of about 200 vacancies a week over the past six weeks.
This has been particularly pronounced in Canberra, with almost 4,400 vacancies in that CBD.
While many families have moved to the ACT from other parts of Australia, some have stayed in the city to find accommodation.
The Government has been struggling to find housing for more than a decade, and last year the ACT lost more than 4,500 housing units to the housing market.
The number of vacant housing units is expected to increase in the coming months.
A spokesperson for the ACT Housing Authority said the agency was aware of the situation and was working with the City of Canberra to help families find affordable housing.
“We’ve been working closely with the city and we have been in contact with some of the families who have been experiencing this issue,” the spokesperson said.
“But we are not at the stage yet where we are going to be able to get the full extent of the problem to the community.”
Our primary concern is that we are doing our best to find the right housing for them and that we’re working with them to help them with the process.
“There is still a lot of work to be done.”
The spokesperson said it would take time for the housing stock to recover and there would be more vacancies as a result.
“While there is no immediate sign of a shortage in the area, we do expect that the supply will remain low for the foreseeable future,” the statement said.
The spokesperson also said the government was continuing to work with developers and the local community to address the problem.
“The Government is working with developers, the city, the community and others to ensure that there is a safe and secure place to put families,” the spokesman said.