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National cabinet touts ‘better deal’ for renters

by Kate Aubrey11 minute read

The national cabinet has agreed to implement a cap on rental increases in a bid to support renters’ rights.

During a national cabinet meeting held in Brisbane on Wednesday, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced a set of reforms designed to empower renters, boost housing supply, and streamline planning regulations.

The move comes in response to the urgent need for affordable housing solutions, as the nation grapples with a shortage in housing supply.

The ‘A Better Deal for Renters’ initiative develops a nationally consistent policy to establish genuine and reasonable grounds for eviction to curtail arbitrary evictions.


National cabinet also agreed to limit rent increases to once a year across fixed and ongoing agreements, to ensure a more stable rental landscape for tenants.

The reforms would limit the frequency of rent increases and ban evictions without reason in jurisdictions that lag behind in renters’ rights, including Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

However, the reforms are already law or in the process of being enacted in the majority of states and territories.

“These changes will make a tangible impact for the almost one-third of Australian households who rent,” Mr Albanese said.

Furthermore, tenants experiencing domestic or family violence will be granted the right to terminate agreements, change locks, and have their names removed from databases.

As housing supply shortage grapples the country, the national cabinet has agreed to the construction of 1.2 million well-located homes within the next five years, commencing on 1 July 2024.

“This is an additional 200,000 new homes above the National Housing Accord target agreed by states and territories last year,” Mr Albanese said.

The move will see the Commonwealth inject $3 billion in performance-based funding; the New Home Bonus is as an incentive for states and territories that surpass their share of the 1 million well-located home target established under the National Housing Accord.

“This will incentivise states and territories to undertake the reforms necessary to boost housing supply and increase housing affordability, making a positive and practical difference for Australians planning to buy a home,” Mr Albanese said.

This target will be supported by the Housing Support Program, a $500 million competitive funding program for local and state governments to kick-start housing supply in well-located areas through targeted activation payments for things like connecting essential services, amenities to support new housing development, or building planning capability.

The revised target aims to align housing supply with projected demand over the next five years.

National cabinet has also endorsed a National Planning Reform Blueprint, which aims to simplify planning requirements and cut through red tape.

This blueprint will involve updating strategic plans at various levels to reflect housing supply targets, promoting medium and high-density housing near existing public transport hubs, amenities, and job centres.

Additionally, the approval process will be streamlined to foster smoother housing development, Mr Albanese explained.

[Related: Housing solutions, rent caps centre to national cabinet discussions]

anthony albanese prime minister ta k lybr


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