Carpenter Government fails on housing as population soars

Residential housing commencement in WA fell sharply in 2007 as the state’s population soared.

The Carpenter Government promised a ‘State Housing Strategy’ in 2001 but hasn’t produced it.

Shadow Housing and Works Minister John McGrath said housing affordability had been totally mismanaged by Labor and the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures proved no relief was in sight for West Australian home buyers in the property market.

“ABS stats released today show constructions in WA residential housing fell from 26,221 commencements in 2006 to 22,734 in 2007,” Mr McGrath said.

“While housing commencements fell by nearly 3500, WA’s population was growing faster than any state of the nation.

“For the year ending September 2007, WA’s population soared by 48,000 – up 2.4 per cent. 

“The government’s mismanagement of housing in WA continues to put additional stress on an already tight housing market, placing causing upward pressure on rents for West Australians.”

Mr McGrath said the government’s mismanagement of housing affordability had been going on since they promised to develop a State Housing Strategy in 2001 when they ‘guaranteed there would be no shortage of residential land in WA’.

“That outcome certainly wasn’t delivered and today’s ABS figures show the failings are only going to get worse,” he said.

“Seven years on, West Australians are under increasing mortgage and rental stress.

“This Labor Government’s laziness has caused untold suffering and stress for WA families.

“Unlike the Carpenter Government, a future Liberal Government has a clear plan to improve rental housing affordability by stimulating the construction of new rental housing.

“In conjunction with the Commonwealth National Rental Affordability Scheme, a Buswell Government will provide government land at a discounted rate for those constructing housing for low-income renters.

“Providing new housing is the fastest way this government can take pressure off soaring rents.

“A Buswell Government will provide solutions to housing affordability – not excuses.”

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