Media Release by The Hon Julie Collins MP

More flexibility in the National Rental Affordability Scheme

The introduction of greater flexibility for endorsed charities participating in the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) is set to make the scheme more attractive to investors.

Minister for Housing and Homelessness Julie Collins today announced changes to the scheme which is a vital part of the Labor Government’s record $26 billion investment in housing affordability.

“This Labor Government is investing $4.5 billion in the scheme to help ease housing pressures and I am pleased today to announce changes to NRAS Regulations that will provide charities with more flexibility and options,” Ms Collins said.

“These changes came out of consultations with key stakeholders and mean that participating charities that originally chose to receive their incentive payments as cash will now be able to elect to receive them as refundable tax offsets.

“This change will allow charities who originally chose to receive incentives as a cash payment to elect to receive them as a refundable tax offset.

“This will make it easier for charities to pass on their incentives to other investors who may value tax offsets more than cash payments.”

Endorsed charities already participating in the scheme have until 1 October 2013 to seek to change the way they receive future incentives from cash payments to refundable tax offsets.

NRAS encourages private investors to build new, more affordable rental homes, by offering annual financial incentives currently valued at $10,350 per eligible home for each year up to 10 years. These homes must be rented at 20 per cent below the market value rate to low and moderate-income households.

“The scheme will deliver 50,000 more affordable rental homes by June 2016-with more than 14,000 already built and a further 24,000 already in the pipeline,” Ms Collins said.

“As well as providing affordable rental homes for families and individuals across Australia, the scheme creates jobs through increased investment in new construction.”

To find out more about the National Rental Affordability Scheme visit