Colin Brinsden, AAP Economics and Business Correspondent
(Australian Associated Press)
The federal government is being urged to commission an independent review into housing affordability against the backdrop of calls from some backbench MPs that superannuation savings should be used to buy a home.
An analysis by the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia found that using super for housing would put significant pressure on house prices and would only exacerbate housing affordability concerns.
ASFA CEO Martin Fahy said Australia already has some of the most expensive housing in the world and using super housing deposits would be disastrous and push prices even further out of reach of first-time buyers.
“Superannuation isn’t the reason young Australians can’t afford to buy a home of their own,” Dr Fahy said.
He blamed a lack of supply and policy settings with respect to residential investment property for the distortionary effect on demand.
“These are the real issues that must be tackled to generate improvements in housing affordability,” Dr Fahy said.
He said using retirement savings for housing deposits is fundamentally inconsistent with the objective of superannuation to provide an adequate retirement income.
“None of the comprehensive reviews of superannuation over the last decade have recommended it, while several have made recommendations to the contrary,” Dr Fahy said.
ASFA recommends that the federal government commissions a comprehensive and independent review of housing affordability to establish a fact base and drive sensible, consistent policy across federal, state and local governments.