Northern Rivers housing crisis driven by wealthy few, new PBO data reveals


New data has revealed that a small group of out-of-town property investors own a huge number of dwellings in the Northern Rivers seat of Richmond, taking advantage of Liberal and Labor-backed tax breaks to push locals out of affordable homes in the region.  

With rental prices in the area having risen by a mindblowing 20% in a year, double the rate of the rise in Sydney, and secure long-term rentals for locals at crisis point in the holiday rental-heavy region, the new data from the independent Parliamentary Budget Office reveals that:

  • 89 out-of-towners own a massive 889 investment properties in Richmond. These people each have 7 or more properties in the electorate and together get Coalition and Labor-backed tax handouts of $19 million a year. Each one of these property moguls gets an average of $211,236 in public subsidies each year for their Richmond properties;

  • 10,885 properties are owned as investment properties by people who live outside of Richmond, which is a huge 11% of all properties in the electorate; and

  • Of these, 7,725 properties are owned by 2,705 out-of-area property investors that each have 2 or more investment properties and together get Coalition- and Labor-backed tax handouts totaling $165m per year. On average, out-of-town property investors with 2 or more investment properties in Richmond get a staggering $61,000 per year in tax handouts;

There are 96,778 dwellings in the seat according to census data..

The Greens would scrap the taxpayer handouts going to people who own two or more investment properties, freeing up $63b across the country to invest in affordable housing and tackling the cost of living. 

As part of the Greens $21B plan to build 1 million affordable homes, the Greens will also build 15,000 new, climate resilient and affordable homes in Richmond and Page, to fix the housing affordability crisis and help those affected by the floods.  

Lines attributable to Adam Bandt MP:

“Liberal and Labor are giving millions of dollars of public handouts to out-of-town property moguls, pushing up housing prices and locking Northern Rivers locals out.

“This is cooked. The Greens will scrap the public handouts to property moguls and make housing affordable for people in the Northern Rivers. 

“The Greens will not only scrap these Labor-backed handouts to property moguls, we will build new affordable homes and give renters more rights. 

Quotes attributable to Greens candidate for Richmond Mandy Nolan:

“This data confirms what many locals have long suspected. A handful of wealthy property moguls from out of town own a huge chunk of the area’s property. 

“Locals aren’t just getting locked out, the Coalition and Labor are also making us give handouts to the property moguls buying up our towns.

“Not only are rich investors from out of town driving up the property prices and pushing out locals so they can maximise the cash from holiday rentals, they are getting millions from the taxpayer to do it.

“Our region has been turned into a game of Monopoly, where some people from out of town have lots of our houses and lots of our people have no home.”