The Western Australian Government today announced a housing stimulus package with an estimated value of approximately $444 million to aid the state’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Social Housing Economic Recovery Package (SHERP) has been developed in an effort to protect and create jobs, boost industry confidence and encourage WA prospective homebuyers to build new homes.
The Department of Communities (Communities) is responsible for delivering three streams of the package, totalling $319 million, comprising:
- Stream 1: $97 million to build or buy (off-the-plan) about 250 dwellings, to be used for either social or affordable housing, across both metropolitan Perth and regional areas between 2020‑21 to 2022‑23
- Stream 2: $142 million to deliver refurbishments to 1,500 existing public and supported residential houses and Community Housing Organisation houses, including the costs to relocate tenants, between 2020‑21 and 2021‑22
- Stream 3: $80 million for a targeted maintenance programs for 3,800 regional social housing properties – including, remote Aboriginal communities’ stock and subsidised housing for regional government workers in 2020‑21.
Targeting the construction industry—the State’s second-largest industry—the SHERP will support an estimated 1,700 jobs across metropolitan and regional areas, many of them in communities where the ongoing availability of work is critical.
The $142 million social housing refurbishment and $80 million regional maintenance programs provide an immediate boost and an ongoing pipeline of work across the state.
Premier Mark McGowan said that WA’s residential building industry made a significant contribution to the domestic economy, accounting for $5.2 billion of Gross State Product (GSP) in 2018-19.
“We know that the housing construction sector has been doing it tough in recent times and we know how important it is to help where we can,” he said.
“This is why we are announcing additional measures to stimulate economic activity and protect, support and create jobs.”
Housing Minister Peter Tinley said that an estimated 66,000 workers were directly employed in the residential construction sector and many thousands more relied on the industry for their livelihoods.
“Protecting and supporting those jobs during this very difficult stage in the state’s history is a responsibility that the McGowan Government takes very seriously,” he said.
“The various elements of the Social Housing Economic Recovery Package are designed to provide opportunities for work – especially in regional areas – and help propel WA’s economic recovery.”
For more information on the Social Housing Economic Recovery Package visit www.communities.wa.gov.au/housingstimulus.