Skip to content
National News Current Affairs, Political

New tool measures compelling value of social housing

Community Housing Industry Association 2 mins read

Media release | Tuesday October 3, 2023

The compelling value of social and affordable housing can now be quantified, thanks to an Australian first calculator that estimates its wider social, economic and environmental benefit.

According to the SIGMAH calculator (Social Infrastructure and Green Measures for Affordable Housing) the 40,000 social and affordable homes to be supported under the Commonwealth’s National Housing Accord and Housing Australia Future Fund over the next five years will create an additional $4.4 billion worth of wider benefit over the next four decades. 

That is over and above the appreciating value of the underlying assets. Once constructed, the dwellings built under the Housing Accord and Housing Australia Future Fund will deliver around $16.2 billion in cost of living relief, primarily through lower rental costs compared to equivalent rentals in the private sector.

The SIGMAH calculator provides government, community housing organisations and the broader social and affordable housing sector with a robust tool to estimate Wider Social and Economic Benefits (WSEB). This allows decision makers to understand how much less public expenditure a government will incur from areas such as health, policing, and community services by making homes available to those who need them. The calculator also estimates private benefits such as higher consumption, income and educational attainment. 

It also provides monetary estimates of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) and environmental benefits from provision of green spaces, dwelling designs and access to transport options and measures the dollar value of lower CO2 estimates due to the energy performance of new dwellings.

Community Housing Industry Association CEO, Wendy Hayhurst, said the world-first initiative was powerful and innovative. “For the first time we can quantify the transformative impact social and affordable housing has, not just for the individual but for society more broadly. 

“Everybody wants to create resilient, sustainable communities. The SIGMAH calculator will provide the evidence base builders, policymakers, and community housing organisations need to recognize the broad and deep benefits of social and affordable housing. This is the data we need to build a more inclusive, clean energy future.

“The tangible, economic and environmental benefits of well-designed and strategically located social and affordable housing are known to those who experience them, but now they can be demonstrated more broadly.” 

The tool was developed by Associate Professor Christian Nygaard (Centre for Urban Transitions) and Dr Trevor Kollmann (Centre for Transformative Innovation), both at Swinburne University of Technology. It builds on research measuring the potential public sector cost offsets associated with providing secure housing for people experiencing complex and long-term homelessness. 

“The evidence shows that secure, appropriate and affordable housing is a centrepiece of a healthy community,” Dr Nygaard said. “Rather than simply assert that, we wanted to quantify it. We strived to provide a tool that will provide the evidence base for housing solutions that foster social stability, wellbeing and environmental progress.”

Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation was the major donor to the calculator and has a long-standing commitment to affordable housing. Erin Dolan, Senior Program Manager Homelessness and Affordable Housing, said: “Funding the SIGMAH calculator was an important project that strengthened the Foundation’s commitment to increasing the supply of safe, secure and affordable housing across the community.  SIGMAH provides the data and technology needed to show the extended impact of what quality affordable housing brings to the community.”

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation also provided a capacity grant which supported the project. 

To arrange interviews, call Nick Lucchinelli 0422 229 032

More from this category

  • Government Federal, National News Current Affairs
  • 16/06/2024
  • 08:22
JEREMY LEIBLER, PRESIDENT, ZIONIST FEDERATION OF AUSTRALIA

STATEMENT ON INVESTIGATION BY THE NINE NEWSPAPERS: HIZB UT-TAHRIR MUST BE URGENTLY BANNED

According to this investigation,Hizb ut-Tahrir – banned in Germany, and proscribed as a terrorist organisation in the United Kingdom – has led national boycotts of Jewish-owned businesses and incited violent protests in Caulfield that required a synagogue to be evacuated; they have infiltrated Australia’s leading university, are glorifying terrorism and distributing extremist material, and are covertly using front organisations to mainstream their extremism with a combined 33,000 followers. We should not have any doubt as to what Hizb ut-Tahrir’s key players and supporters mean when they refer to 7 October as a “day of courage,” or when they share videos…

  • Political
  • 15/06/2024
  • 10:30
Electrical Trades Union - Maritime Union of Australia

Offshore wind a winner for Wollongong

The Electrical Trades Union of Australia (ETU) and Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) applaud further progress toward the development of Australia’s offshore renewable energy with today’s announcement the Albanese Government has declared an offshore wind zone in the Pacific Ocean off the Illawarra in New South Wales. This announcement is another key step to delivering both energy and job security in a region home to key industrial processes that require careful long-term planning. The ETU and MUA said the Government’s commitment to building renewable infrastructure in Australia would support heavy industry with cheaper renewable electricity, maximising local content and workers,…

  • National News Current Affairs, Transport Automotive
  • 14/06/2024
  • 10:20
Charles Darwin University

CDU EXPERT: E-scooters sacrificing human safety for sustainability

14 JUNE, 2024 Who: Charles Darwin University law and technology expert Dr Mark Brady Topics: Distributive justice, or the fair distribution of burdens and benefits among society The distributive justice of e-scooters beyond sustainability How distributive justice needs to be a priority in policy framework Contact details: Call +61 8 8946 6721 or email media@cdu.edu.au to arrange an interview. Quotes attributable to Dr Mark Brady: "Micromobility devices are a sustainable solution to reduce cars on the streets and once enough people are using them, it’s presupposed to save energy and reduce emissions. “Footpaths were traditionally safe spaces where people such…

Media Outreach made fast, easy, simple.

Feature your press release on Medianet's News Hub every time you distribute with Medianet. Pay per release or save with a subscription.