UDIA's National Policy Priorities 
for 2020

The critical role that new housing and construction plays in fuelling economic activity is evident in new independent research undertaken by EY on behalf of UDIA National.


The research illustrates that 7.5 percent of national economic activity is generated by construction – along with 750,000 direct and indirect jobs.


The multiplier effect for demand and services generated across the supply chain is crucial for new jobs creation and more importantly domestic consumption.


In total, the direct and indirect output generated is a staggering $312 billion making the industry one of the most vital to Australia’s economic success.


The origins of Australia’s housing affordability woes can be traced back to the supply deficiency that accumulated in the lead-up to, and throughout the Global Financial Crisis (GFC).


The gap between supply and demand was estimated to have reached almost 160,000 by 2010 (National Housing Supply Council – State of Supply Report 2011).


As Australia emerged from the financial crisis, credit was easier to access, population and net migration increased, and housing demand kicked back to life. However, the mismatch between supply and demand never closed and this ‘supply gap’ fuelled rapid price growth.


Even at the peak of the construction cycle that followed, housing approvals and construction barely touched the underlying level of demand. A generation of homebuyers suffered.


Housing markets are once again at a critical juncture. Housing approvals are slowing, and development and construction pipelines are thinning – representing a medium-term risk to supply.


Yet tentative signs of demand are re-emerging. Prices have stabilised and hint at an upswing, at least in established markets. Credit flows for home lending have eased but still not to the levels of pre-Royal Commission times.


Against a backdrop of recovering demand and more ready access to housing credit, both new dwelling approvals and commencements have fallen by around 20 percent since their peak.


Further, Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data from July and August 2019 indicates that dwelling approval numbers are continuing to contract and are now at their lowest monthly levels in seven years - with commencements likely to follow suit.

If the trends continue, the collision between increased demand, increasing pricing and stalled supply will fuel another cycle of diminishing affordability.

Dwellings approvals and commencements continue to trend towards their lowest levels in the last seven years.


As housing demand continues to recover and housing credit begins to once again flow more freely, urgent actions are necessary to reverse the significant decline in new housing supply.

Building a Better Australia.


UDIA National applauds the Federal Government’s endeavours to boost confidence in housing markets. Comfort around the policy settings for negative gearing and capital gains tax, a new initiative to help close the deposit gap for first homebuyers, and the commencement of efforts to ease access to housing credit are positive steps.


However, we do view the opportunity for further momentum as both urgent and attainable. Initiatives that cement and extend existing policy goals are promoted in our National Priorities for 2020.



Streamline red and green tape

Using the review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act to streamline approvals and curb excessive red tape.

Support housing supply

Giving a clear mandate to the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) to identify and remove the barriers to efficient housing delivery.

Fix planning systems

Offering incentives to the states and territories to streamline and modernise their planning, approvals and zoning systems.


Diversify housing stock

Securing better returns on investment in infrastructure by creating more diverse housing stock.

Integrate policy reform

Integrating a suite of initiatives on infrastructure, population, cities and housing developments underway across government to yield the strongest dividend.

These goals are within reach and will help ensure Australia stays ahead of the curve on fixing housing affordability, and ultimately, building a better Australia.

Latest News


Thursday 13 February 2020

A new push to reform taxes - including a switch from stamp duties to more broad-based measures such as land tax - has been welcomed by the nation’s housing industry.


The Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) National says the abolition of stamp duty should serve as a cornerstone of any tax reform agenda.


“Stamp duty is one of the most inefficient taxes in our economy and acts as a substantial barrier to home ownership,” said UDIA National Executive Director Connie Kirk.



Tuesday 11 February 2020

A jump in the value of new loan commitments suggests access to credit is beginning to improve but it needs to be matched with supply increases, according to the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA).


New data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows a 4.4 percent increase in the value of new loan commitments for housing in December last year.


Notably, the number of loan commitments to owner-occupier first home buyers recorded a 6.2 percent increase.


“We are starting to see evidence of a sustained increase in new loan commitments – which is a positive sign for homebuyers seeking access to credit,” said UDIA National Executive Connie Kirk.



Monday 3 February 2020

Tentative signs that housing approvals have stabilised are encouraging but need to be balanced against the wide gaps that still exists between supply and demand, according to the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) National.


New housing approval data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today suggests the long slide in approvals may be over.


However, approvals remain well below the peak of two years ago and out of synch with overall demand.


“Any signal that we have seen the floor on housing approvals is a welcome one, but we’ve still got a long way to go,” UDIA National Executive Director Connie Kirk said.


News - complete list

Stamp duty ripe for abolition

Thursday, 13 February 2020


Uptick in lending needs to be matched with supply

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Approvals need to keep lifting to satisfy demand

Monday, 3 February 2020

New home loan deposit scheme welcomed

Wednesday, 1 January 2020

Lending panel for deposit scheme welcomed

Thursday, 12 December 2019

Announcing new President for UDIA National - Simon Basheeer

Thursday, 28 November 2019

EPBC Review can fulfil promise of streamlined assessment

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

RBA right to call out risks from sliding housing activity

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Ominous signs as dwelling approvals keep falling

Monday, 9 October 2019

Rate cut needs to be matched by more lending

Tuesday, 1 October 2019

National Population Plan a critical new policy tool

Monday, 23 September 2019

House price data shows recovering a long way off

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Deposit gap scheme opens the door to home ownership

Wednesday, 12 September 2019

Skills shortage threatens infrastructure delivery and the Australian economy

Friday, 6 September 2019

Dive in dwelling investment hurts economy

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

Keep up reform of building and construction standards

Tuesday, 3 September 2019

Housing approval data rings alarm bells

Saturday, 31 August 2019

Build to rent can help alleviate housing affordability once it is supported by Government policy

Friday, 30 August 2019

Infrastructure Audit a call to action

Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Weak Building Approvals remain an economic drag

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Further Statement on the building and construction industry

Thursday, 18 July 2019

Statement on the building and construction industry

Monday, 15 July 2019

Soft lending data confirms the case to rev up reforms.

Friday, 12 July 2019

Changes to home loan assessment rules welcomed

Friday, 5 July 2019

Weak building approval figures show need to drive reform

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Australia's housing market can't become collateral in trade tensions

Saturday, 29 June 2019


New data reinforces need for National Population Plan

Wednesday, 20 June 2019

NSW Budget 2019 - UDIA applauds NSW and Federal Government collaboration on key infrastructure projects

Wednesday, 20 June 2019

UDIA unveils six-point action plan for Commonwealth Government

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

RBA rate cut to help spur housing recovery

Tuesday, 4 June 2019

UDIA congratulates Labor's Shadow Ministry

Monday, 3 June 2019

Endorsement of Anthony Albanese is welcome news says UDIA

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

New Morrison Ministry is great news for infrastructure and housing

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Moves to change how home loans are assessed is welcome news
Tuesday, 21 May 2019

UDIA congratulates the Prime Minister and his team on their historic victory: unlocking housing credit and more liveable cities must be top priorities

Monday, 20 May 2019

Contact Us

If you’d like to find out more about 'Building a Better Australia' contact us.

Urban Development Institute of Australia | Tel: (02) 9262 1214

Find out more about UDIA National - www.udia.com.au

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Building a better Australia

About UDIA

The Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) seeks to create awareness that national prosperity is dependent on our success in housing our communities and building and rebuilding cities for future generations. It is the peak body representing the property development industry throughout Australia. Its members cover a wide range of specialist and industry fields, including: Developers, Valuers, Planners, Engineers, Architects, Marketers, Researchers, Project Managers, Surveyors, Landscape Architects, Community Consultants, Environmental Consultants, Lawyers, Sales and Marketing Professionals, Financial Institutions, State and Local Government Authorities, and Product Suppliers.

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