Minister for Housing appointment recognises importance of property sector: REIA

Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing Michael Sukkar.
Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing Michael Sukkar.

PRIME Minister Scott Morrison’s appointment of a Minister for Housing recognised the importance of the property sector according to the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA).

President Adrian Kelly said the institute had long advocated for housing being a ministerial responsibility and welcomed the appointment of Michael Sukkar to the role.

“The property sector is one of the largest sectors in the Australian economy in terms of employment, GDP and investment and has been the driver of economic growth since the decline in investment in the mining sector commenced,” he said.

“This appointment recognises the importance that the property sector plays in the economy as well as in policy with taxation of property and housing affordability being at the forefront of public policy debate.”

Mr Kelly said housing affordability was a priority election issue which had been recognised by both sides of politics in their support of the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme.

“With first-home buyers currently representing just 17.9 per cent of total housing loan approvals at the beginning of this year, such initiatives will be a timely boost not just for first-home buyers but for the building sector and the economy in general,” he said.

“APRA’s announcement last week to incorporate an interest rate buffer of 2.5 per cent instead of the current 7 per cent serviceability buffer on home loans, the prospect of at least one interest rate cut and the introduction of the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme comes at a good time for first-home buyers with favourable market conditions.”