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Byron Shire
July 15, 2024

Affordable boarding houses

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It is a sad reflection on the concept ‘affordable’ when the real outcome is actually unaffordable housing. 

This concept of an affordable housing SEPP (State Environmental Planning Policy) was to relieve our state government of the responsibility of building social housing. The boarding house concept was to be even more affordable, and set up mainly to house students and single workers.

It is a fiasco of deception of social housing, a long-term solution, when the replacement seems to be sold off not too long after being constructed. Not just sold off at a lower rate but sold off at market value then let out at market value. This has no real affordability attached to what is supposed to be affordable for ten to 15 years.

Of course, the SEPP was planned in respect to boarding house rental with not just a piddly three rooms out of a huge 43 rooms at the supposed affordable rate of 20 per cent less than the going rate, but with all the boarding house rooms at the discounted rate.

We only have to think about it and then it does make more sense. How is it that we have no real affordability in our shire when there has been so many of these SEPP boarding houses and houses built and why are they being sold off?

People are able to ring the SEPP NSW department and ask these very curious questions themselves. Please do so and see if you get the same conflicting answers ie they are supposed to not be sold off so soon after construction but kept as cheap rentals.

Annie Radermacher, Brunswick Heads

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