14 May 2019

The brutal truth about housing policy

Changing rules on negative gearing and capital gains tax is more likely to increase home ownership than guaranteeing part of the deposit. But no policy proposed in the 2019 federal election affects the really big lever for home ownership: increasing housing supply.

12 May 2019

Coalition’s plan won’t spark home ownership recovery among young

At least the Coalition didn’t resort to yet another first homebuyers’ grant scheme that would only push up house prices at substantial cost to government.

8 May 2019

Confirmation from NSW Treasury. Labor’s negative gearing policy would barely move house prices

Behind the headline is the punchline: NSW Treasury predicts that under Labor’s reforms to negative gearing and the capital gains tax discount, house prices would be just 0.5 per cent lower than otherwise by the end of 2019.

25 February 2019

Where is home for marginalised consumers?

Most low-income Australians secure their housing in the private rental market, and even more will do so in future. Housing policy should reflect that reality.

11 February 2019

Curbing finance might make housing cheaper, but would it make us better off?

Many younger Australians are justifiably anxious about housing affordability. In his book Why You Can’t Afford a Home, economist Josh Ryan-Collins pins the blame on the banks. But he doesn’t tell the full story.

1 November 2018

Abolish stamp duty. The ACT shows the rest of us how to tax property

You might think that being a state (or territory) treasurer is a boring job. The federal treasurer gets all the media attention and controls many of the big economic levers, including income and company tax, massive Australia-wide spending and trade and competition policy. But you would be wrong.

31 October 2018

To make housing more affordable this is what state governments need to do

House prices might now be falling, but Australians’ anxiety over housing affordability is not. Price falls of a few percentage points in Sydney and Melbourne are cold comfort to first home buyers. They are still paying 50% more than they would have five years ago. Further price falls are likely, but even then housing will still be less affordable than it was two decades ago.

23 July 2018

Migrants are still buying into the dream of home ownership, but it’s becoming more elusive

Recent Australian migrants are buying into the Great Australian Dream of home ownership. But rates of home ownership among recent migrants are falling, as they are among all Australians. Unless we build enough housing to match Australia’s growing population, all Australians, including migrants, will pay the price.

11 July 2018

Supply sceptics beware: without more housing, it won’t be affordable

Some affordable-housing advocates are sceptical that building more homes will result in housing becoming much more affordable. Instead they argue that there should be more subsidies for social and affordable housing, and fewer tax breaks that artificially boost housing demand.But in this presentation the Australian Conference of Economists, Grattan Institute’s Australian Perspectives Fellow Brendan Coates shows why more supply is vital to housing affordability.

27 June 2018

Housing tax reform: what difference will it make?

This presentation to the NSW Affordable Housing Conference identifies the tax reforms that will (and won’t) make a real difference to housing affordability. Changes to capital gains tax, negative gearing, stamp duty and land tax would all help. But boosting the supply of housing matters more in the long term.