Media Release by Hon Kevin Andrews MP

Round 5 of flawed National Rental Affordability Scheme not proceeding

The Abbott Government will not proceed with the final round of the National Rental Affordability Scheme.

From the beginning, the previous government’s scheme was poorly designed, with multiple flaws, ambiguous legal requirements and red tape.

The National Rental Affordability Scheme has fallen well short of expectations–it has simply failed to deliver for low and moderate income Australians.

The scheme has been plagued by the late delivery of dwellings, trading of incentives, multiple changes to agreed locations, leasing to international students and rorting.

The Government is making decisions that repair the Budget, strengthen the economy and prepare Australia for the long term challenges before us. Incentives already allocated through the scheme will continue to be paid for up to 10 years, as long as eligibility requirements are met and homes in the construction pipeline are built in the agreed locations according to agreed timeframes.

The scheme will be reviewed to address ongoing issues and ensure remaining incentives meet the scheme’s original aim.

In consultation with states, territories, investors, developers and the housing sector, we will look at how the scheme can best meet its objectives, stamp out trading of incentives, target Australians most in need, and reduce red tape and ambiguity.

This will ensure that homes that have already been allocated incentives provide affordable housing to the people this scheme was originally intended to support–Australians on low and moderate incomes.

The Abbott Government is committed to supporting people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

The Government is investing up to $115 million into the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness, to be matched by the states and territories.

This will enable hundreds of critical homelessness services to continue, providing them with the peace of mind to stay open, keep their staff and continue to support some of Australia’s most vulnerable people.

The Budget is part of the Government’s Economic Action Strategy to build a strong, prosperous economy and a safe, secure Australia.