Sydney’s population growth has created an undersupply of housing


We know Sydney is creating more jobs than any other state and this has underpinned its population growth.

Recently NSW Planning Minister, Rob Stokes, said that  Sydney’s population is growing faster than predicted, putting more pressure on the city’s already-stretched housing and transport needs.

Stokes explained it is a “symptom of Sydney’s success.”sydney office australia new south wales nsw

Figures released by the Government show that Sydney’s population is expected to leap by more than 2.1 million people in the next 20 years – about 170,000 more than predicted only two years ago.

The NSW population is expected to jump by 2.7 million, increasing to almost 10 million by 2036.

The figures underline changes needed to accommodate the growing population.

Under previous forecasts, Sydney was expected to need another 664,000 homes by 2031.

The figures revealed that Sydney’s ageing population is growing too.

Over the next 20 years the city will have almost half a million more people aged 65 years or more.

At the same time there is expected to be over 1.5 million babies born.

That means family households will continue to make up half of all homes in Sydney.


Source:Planning NSW

The drivers of population growth: 

The main drivers of our future population growth will be:

  1. Overseas migration
  2. Internal migration gain
  3. Internal migration loss
  4. High fertility rate
  5. Ageing population


Source:Planning NSW

We’ll need a different type of accomodation.

The new forecasts show the city requiring 726,000 new dwellings by 2036.Rob Stokes said Sydney needed more housing types than suburban blocks or apartment towers.

In producing these homes, Mr Stokes said, Sydney needed more housing types than suburban blocks or apartment towers.

There are going to be areas of towers [in] central parts, but we don’t want that across the urban fabric,” said Mr Stokes.

“That doesn’t respond to the way Sydneysiders want to live.”

Mr Stokes said it was financially “out of reach” for an average Sydney couple to buy a detached home in a middle ring suburb on 800 square metres.

“However if that 800 square metre block became four 200 square metre terrace houses, you would still have access to private open space… a vegie patch, a clothes line, you would still have a street frontage, you would still have the adaptability to paint the house whatever colour you wanted.”

To that end, the Minister is attempting to make it easier for developers to build terraces or smaller developments through established suburbs and on the fringes of the city.


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George is a Director of Metropole Property Strategists in Sydney. He shares his 27 years of experience in the property industry as a licensed estate agent and active property investor to help create wealth for his clients.

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