City Futures Blog

News and research in housing and urban policy, from Australia’s leading urban policy research centre.

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Stay cool with revised house construction codes

February 15th, 2019 · No Comments · Climate change, Construction, Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Housing conditions, Sustainability, Sydney, Wellbeing

By Professor Mat Santamouris, Built Environment, UNSW Sydney. This article was first published by the Sydney Morning Herald. For many Australian households, summer’s debilitating heatwaves will be felt well into autumn as the steep costs of airconditioning show up on household power bills. We shouldn’t have to live like this. Much of the punitive cost […]

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Is social housing essential infrastructure? How we think about it does matter

February 6th, 2019 · No Comments · Finance, Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Productivity, Social housing

By Kathleen Flanagan, University of Tasmania; Chris Martin, UNSW Sydney; Julie Lawson, RMIT University, and Keith Jacobs, University of Tasmania. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. We know that safe, adequate, affordable and appropriate housing is essential for our health, well-being and social and economic security. […]

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The big lesson from Opal Tower is that badly built apartments aren’t only an issue for residents

January 17th, 2019 · No Comments · Cities, Construction, Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Housing conditions, Strata, Sydney

By Laura Crommelin, Bill Randolph and Hazel Easthope (City Futures Research Centre), and Martin Loosemore (Built Environment, UNSW Sydney). Originally published on The Conversation. The saga of Opal Tower, the 36-storey Sydney apartment building evacuated on Christmas Eve after frightening cracking, has helped to expose the deep cracks in Australia’s approach to building apartments. An interim […]

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There are lessons to be drawn from the cracks that appeared in Sydney’s Opal Tower, but they extend beyond building certification

January 11th, 2019 · No Comments · Construction, Government, Guest appearance, Housing conditions, Sydney

By Geoff Hanmer, Adjunct Lecturer in Architecture, Univeristy of NSW, Sydney. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. The reasons for the cracked concrete that triggered the evacuation – twice – of residents from Sydney’s Opal Tower over Christmas and the New Year are unknown and will […]

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Labor’s housing pledge is welcome, but direct investment in social housing would improve it

December 19th, 2018 · No Comments · Affordability, Affordable housing, Finance, Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Housing supply

By Julie Lawson, RMIT University and Laurence Troy, UNSW. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. Despite recent falls in the housing market, housing costs and indebtedness bite deeply into household budgets, especially at Christmas time. Just over 433,000 households confront housing stress and homelessness every day […]

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Shorten places housing at the centre of the 2019 election

December 18th, 2018 · No Comments · Affordability, Affordable housing, Government, Housing, Housing supply

By Hal Pawson, City Futures Research Centre. Originally published on John Menadue’s Pearls and Irritations. With his weekend announcement of a $6.6 billion affordable rental construction program, Bill Shorten has dramatically reinforced Labor’s emphasis on housing as central to the party’s 2019 election policy pitch. The initiative, Labor’s first significant housing investment pledge in four federal […]

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Australia needs to triple its social housing by 2036. This is the best way to do it

November 15th, 2018 · No Comments · Affordable housing, Demographics, Finance, Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Housing supply, Social housing

By Julie Lawson, RMIT University; Hal Pawson, UNSW; Laurence Troy, UNSW, and Ryan van den Nouwelant, Western Sydney University. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. Australia needs to triple its small stock of social housing over the next 20 years to cover both the existing backlog […]

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Who wins and who loses when platforms like Airbnb disrupt housing? And how do you regulate it?

November 8th, 2018 · No Comments · Affordability, Airbnb, Cities, Government, Housing, Housing supply, International, Law, Marginal rental, Private rental, Sharing, Sydney

By Laura Crommelin, Chris Martin and Laurence Troy (City Futures Research Centre, UNSW Sydney) and Sharon Parkinson (Swinburne University of Technology). This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. Short-term letting platforms like Airbnb are changing property owners’ and investors’ views and behaviour in the Sydney and Melbourne rental […]

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What we need for a national settlement strategy that works

October 19th, 2018 · No Comments · Cities, Demographics, Migration, Planning, Regions

By Sue Holliday, Built Environment, UNSW Sydney. Originally published by The Fifth Estate. There is a growing cacophony of calls for a national settlement strategy. What does that mean? Are we all over the exhaustion of daily congestion? Are we fed up with promises of infrastructure that fails to catch up with the growth of […]

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An open letter on rental housing reform

September 25th, 2018 · No Comments · Government, Guest appearance, Housing, Housing conditions, Law, Tenancy

The right of landlords to terminate a lease with no grounds is the most serious deficiency in residential tenancy laws in New South Wales. Shutterstock Following a review of the New South Wales Residential Tenancies Act 2010 in 2016 and extended consultations, the NSW government has introduced a number of reforms to parliament. Debate is […]

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