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‘Better chance of winning lotto’ than hitting home targets: PIPA

by Charlotte Humphrys10 minute read

The chair of the investment association has said she had a better chance of winning the lottery than the government has of following through on its HAFF targets.

Nicola McDougall, chair of the Property and Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA), said on 16 April that she had a “better chance of winning lotto next week” than the federal government has of building 1.2 million homes in the next five years.

The chair spoke in reference to the Housing Australia Future Fund (HAFF) and the National Housing Accord’s target to produce 240,000 homes a year for five years from mid-2024 (1.2 million).

Prices have continued to rise due to a lack of housing supply, which, according to PIPA, is a trend that is unlikely to “change trajectory”.


The association said property prices were likely to increase as migration levels and population growth remain high and that the government housing targets were “falling further behind by the month”.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) revealed in March that the national population grew 2.5 per cent in the 12 months to 30 September 2023, bringing the total population to 26.8 million.

According to Beidar Cho, ABS head of demography, 83 per cent of the annual population growth was from net overseas migration, while the remaining 17 per cent was from “natural increase”.

Speaking on the ABS’ net overseas migration figures, PIPA said it was “mind-boggling considering the lack of housing supply currently available for renters’.

McDougall called for action from the government to tackle migration levels: “Not only does that tap need to be turned off dramatically, but more needs to be done at a policy level to encourage investors back into the market to help remedy the rental catastrophe.”

Arguing that governments should focus on reducing the serviceability buffer to support buyers back into the market, she said “an immediate reduction in the 3 percentage point borrowing serviceability buffer would be a good place to start”.

Looking to Australia’s respective property markets, McDougall noted the departure of investors from Victoria would continue to “negatively impact its rental crisis”, while market conditions remain strong in Adelaide and Brisbane, with Sydney also remaining resilient.

She said that purchase activity in Perth “may be slowing down”, continuing that the peak of sales activity in the capital city has been reached and that medium house prices were “yet to reflect this potential state of play”.

[Related: Brokers see surge in tiny home demand]

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