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$vuetify.icons.faPhone1300 650 620

Poor population forecasts compound housing supply problems

Media release

Poor population forecasts compound housing supply problems

Media release
“Australia’s population reached 26.8 million in September 2023, more than a decade ahead of the Australian Government’s forecast,” stated HIA Chief Economist, Tim Reardon.

The ABS today released its quarterly data on the population and components of change for Australia and its states and territories, covering births, deaths, and migration.

“The Intergenerational Report (IGR) in 2007 projected that Australia’s population would not reach 26.8 million until 2034/35,” added Mr Reardon.

“Underestimation of population growth is a systemic policy failure that compounds the challenge of delivering sufficient housing.

“The ABS projected the national population to reach 26.9 million by the mid-2024, a figure that had been exceeded by the time their announcement was released in November 2023.

“An investment in improving ABS data collection, especially around land and population, could have a greater impact on housing supply than other Australian government initiatives.

“State and local councils cannot be held solely accountable for under supplying homes, without clear guidance on population growth. This is not just a short-term problem emerging due to a spike in population after the pandemic.

“A core component of the Australian government’s initiatives to address the undersupply of housing, including delivering 1.2 million homes, is to invest in improving the quality of data around housing supply.

“An investment by the Australian government in improving the quality of housing data is an important component to addressing this systemic policy failure.

“This should focus on national reporting of land supply to enable performance benchmarking of local councils’ delivery of new homes. 

“Good policy decisions require good data".

IGR population forecasts (m)

Source: IGR 2023

Australia's Population Trajectory

Source: ABS

For more information please contact:

Tim Reardon

HIA Chief Economist
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