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Housing SEPP 2021 in Effect

By 7 January 2022No Comments

The much-anticipated State Environmental Planning Policy (Housing) 2021 (Housing SEPP) has been finalised and commenced in NSW on 26 November 2021. The Housing SEPP reforms and consolidates five previous SEPPs:
• State Environmental Planning Policy (Affordable Rental Housing) 2009 (ARHSEPP);
• State Environmental Planning Policy (Housing for Seniors and People with a Disability) 2004 (Seniors SEPP);
• State Environmental Planning Policy No 70 – Affordable Housing (Revised Schemes) (SEPP 70);
• State Environmental Planning Policy No 21 – Caravan Parks; and
• State Environmental Planning Policy No 36 – Manufactured Home Estates.
The Housing SEPP has defined new housing types including build-to-rent (BTR) housing, co-living housing and independent living units for seniors.
Noteworthy changes found in the Housing SEPP include:
• Extending the time that private in-fill affordable housing must be used as affordable housing from 10 to 15 years.
• Expanding the requirement for in-fill affordable housing to be located in an accessible area beyond Greater Sydney to include the Newcastle region (Cessnock, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Newcastle and Port Stephens LGAs) and the Wollongong region (Kiama, Shellharbour and Wollongong LGAs).
• Making a distinction between Boarding Houses and Co-Living Housing, similar in their built form but differ in terms of who they are designed for and who will manage them.
o Boarding Houses must be used for affordable housing and be managed by a Registered Community Housing Provider in accordance with a Plan of Management.
o Co-Living housing does not have affordability requirements, but will operate under a Plan of Management with a manager that is contactable by phone 24/7. Co-Living housing is aimed at providing housing for young professionals, key workers and students.
• The provisions of SEPP 70 have been consolidated into Part 2 of the Housing SEPP. DPIE’s Guideline for Developing an Affordable Housing Contribution Scheme is still current, with the SEPP 70 Affordable Housing Viability Tool available here for public awareness of the factors that would be considered by councils when using the Tool to determine a viable contribution rate.