This research investigates the potential of alternative housing models to increase the supply of affordable housing for older Australians and the role alternative financing schemes could play in expanding those options.
A survey of industry stakeholders shows almost 75 per cent reported that the housing needs of lower income older people (55+) in the jurisdiction where they were based are ‘not well’ or ‘not at all well’ met. Participants said relying too heavily on the private rental sector to house older lower income people was problematic, and one of the main reasons why alternative affordable housing options are urgently needed.
The research identified seven housing models that best represented different combinations of attributes suitable for older households and that could benefit from further research: using mixed use apartment building owned by a state housing authority (rental); cooperative housing on land owned by a community housing provider (rental); communal housing in a two-storey building owned by a community housing provider (rental); transportable home on vacant public land (rental); shared equity home in the outer suburbs of a capital city (ownership); dual key property in the outer suburbs of a capital city (ownership); and village-style housing (rental).
The models having the greatest potential to better meet people’s needs are:
- integrated mixed-use developments
- modular-style manufactured housing utilising vacant land
- low-rise medium density development
- reforms to the private rental sector to better protect older tenants.