Unit demand to remain strong with continuing under-supply forecasted

Australia’s chronic property shortage is set to be one of the key issues underlying the real estate market for years to come, and will drive up the demand for units, says the government’s housing supply advisory.

According to the National Housing Supply Council’s recently released State of Supply Report 2011, Australia’s overall shortage of dwellings sits at 186,800 and is projected to hit 640,000 by 2030.

In terms of sheer numbers, the largest housing shortfalls are in NSW and Queensland, says the report, with shortfalls of 73,700 and 61,900 respectively.

In relative terms the Northern Territory tops the list, with a shortfall that is estimated to exceed 10% of total underlying demand.

According to the report, the key factors behind Australia’s national housing shortage include:

  • the country’s high rate of population growth;
  • a weak post-GFC construction market;
  • Australia’s ageing population;
  • significant growth in the number of lone-person households;
  • and significant growth in the number of households containing couples without children.
  • As a result, the National Housing Supply Council expects higher density housing to increase in popularity in the coming decades.

“Most regions are projected to see a greater relative increase in demand for flats, apartments and townhouses than for detached houses,” says the report.