News and information from the
Victorian Community Housing Sector peak body
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September 2017

A message from your state peak

It's busy times for the community housing sector in Victoria with the implications of the government's Homes for Victorian's strategy still being clarified and tweaked. We will be holding a briefing for registered housing organisations next week on the progress of the management transfer initiative, which will be used to transfer the management of 4,000 public housing properties to community housing organisations. 

This week CHFV held a well-attended forum for members to learn about the proposed allocations framework that organisations will need to agree to use if they wish to opt in to the Victorian Housing Register. The framework is open for consultation for the next three weeks and we encourage members to take the time to make a submission.

In the meantime, an inquiry is underway into the government's public housing estate renewal program - raising concerns that public housing tenants will be forced to continue to live in housing that is well-past its used-by date.

Our training program continues to be packed with industry-tailored training to meet demand from a sector hungry to increase its capacity.

Finally, we are faced with the difficult task of finding a suitable replacement for our incredibly talented Steve Staikos in his Policy and Projects position. Do spread the word.

Lesley Dredge


Allocations Framework - the missing piece

The development of the Victorian Housing Register has been proceeding well but it has been missing a vital piece of enabling policy. The community housing allocations framework was finally released in late August for a three-week consultation period. DHHS and CHFV ran a forum for community housing organisations on Monday to work through the key elements of the framework.

At face value, the policy may seem straightforward but its various layers provide for a fundamental and complex change to business practices for the sector.

CHFV, and each community housing organisation, will be analysing the implications of this policy reform on their mission, their business model and viability, and will be providing feedback to DHHS by 15 September.

If you are interested in reading more about the framework all papers can be downloaded here.


Management Transfer Initiative briefing

In March 2017, the Victorian Government released Homes for Victorians, outlining a coordinated approach across government to improve liveability, housing affordability and support for disadvantaged Victorians.  

Included in Homes for Victorians was the Director of Housing’s decision to transfer management of 4,000 public housing properties to the community housing sector to increase its capacity.

Jackie Barry, Director Housing Asset Strategy and Financing, invites community housing organisations to attend a meeting where she will provide an update on the progress of the Management Transfer Initiative, including:
•             the projects’ strategic framework
•             project objectives
•             property selection principles
•             project phases.

The briefing will be held:
Friday, September 15
2pm to 4pm
1/128 Exhibition St, Melbourne
Seats are limited to registered community housing organisations who are asked to send a maximum of two representatives. Register by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Inquiry into housing renewal

Over the last few weeks there has been increasing debate about the State Government’s plans to redevelop eight or nine of Melbourne’s rundown public housing estates.

Most recently, the Legislative Council provided a reference to the Standing Committee on Legal and Social Issues to hold an inquiry into renewal program. You can read the detailed terms of reference of the inquiry here. The proposed increase in public housing units of at least 10 per cent; the impact on the existing tenants; the mix of public and private units; and, the density and loss of public space are amongst many items listed.

Scrutiny of the program is not necessarily a bad thing. However, the danger is that the program could be delayed or derailed.

Our ageing public housing estates are extremely rundown to the point of being beyond mere renovation and not acting is no longer an option. Public housing tenants deserve to live in well-located, quality housing. Redevelopments of public housing of this scale are extremely ambitious and controversial, which is why they have been in the too hard basket for too long. We believe that total replacement of the public housing on these sites with social housing integrated into new, mixed use precincts is the right outcome for tenants and the community.

We would like to participate in a constructive debate about what is possible on these sites and we believe that community housing has many positive contributions to make:

  • enhanced community engagement to provide tenants, the neighbouring community and other key stakeholders with quality information and an opportunity to have input into the redevelopments
  • increased uplift in the number of social and affordable units delivered on the sites
  • on-going place management services to rebuild communities once tenants return.
Our involvement in social housing is for the long haul so we have a vested interest in ensuring the ongoing success of any redevelopments. The recent announcement of the redevelopment of the Ivanhoe public housing estate in Sydney provides a glimpse of what is possible when government, the community and the private sector work together – see the article below.

NSW Government’s Communities Plus

Communities Plus is public housing redevelopment program to our north with the aim of creating ‘mixed communities’ of social housing, affordable housing, and market housing residents. The Aspire Consortium of Mission Australia Frasers Property and Citta Property Group have won the tender for the $2.2 billion redevelopment of the Ivanhoe public housing estate in Macquarie Park, in north-east Sydney.
The master plan for the 8.2 hectare site will see 259 existing low-density public housing dwellings demolished and replaced with more than 3000 dwellings,  including at least 950 new social housing apartments and 128 affordable rental apartments.

A non-government co-educational vertical high school, two 75-place childcare centres, a 120-bed aged care facility, 141 social housing independent living units and 132 private independent living units are also in the plans.
Community facilities on the drawing board include a retail hub, community gardens, a multifunction community centre including a gymnasium and pool, a seniors ‘wellbeing centre’, village green, park, and walking and cycle trail with outdoor exercise stations. The social housing dwellings will be owned by the government’s Land and Housing Corporation, and leased to Mission Australia to manage as the community housing provider.

Mission Australia will have staffed offices on-site to assist in the delivery of support services and programs to strengthen the local community.

Related news stories:
‘A big deal’: Affordable housing development Ivanhoe Estate in Sydney gets government go-ahead

Frasers Property and Citta close on Ivanhoe socila housing project in Sydney

Ivanhoe Estate: Successful tenderer for redevelopment announced

Redevelopment of MacQuarie Park's Ivanhoe Estate


Last chance to book your seat!


Book your seats now to hear from Assistant Minister to the Treasurer, the Hon Michael Sukkar, about the Federal Government’s housing initiatives such as the bond aggregator, and Productivity Commissioner Stephen King, who is presiding over the current investigation into ways to improve the delivery of Human Services – including affordable housing.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register.


20,000 new properties needed each year: CEDA


Australia needs  20,000 new affordable properties each year to house low income people, according to one recommendation by the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA).

CEDA’s released its report Housing Australia, which warns that Australia’s housing affordability challenge could have long-term budget and political implications as more people retire without owning a home, or end up on the city fringe.

CHIA CEO Peta Winzar was on the panel at the Melbourne launch of the report.

'I welcomed the Commonwealth Government’s budget package as an important first step in addressing the issues surrounding housing affordability, but the CEDA Report shows clearly how much work still needs to be done,’ Ms Winzar says.

Ms Winzar also urged the Victorian Government to identify more government land to be developed or redeveloped for affordable housing.

CEDA Research and Policy Committee Chairman, Professor Rodney Maddock says, ‘Prolonged housing affordability issues will result in more people entering retirement without owning their home and low socioeconomic households pushed to outer or regional areas where transport infrastructure is poor and job prospects are lower.

‘In the long term this could have budget implications for governments as more people become reliant on government assistance,’ he says.

‘With most Australians choosing to live in our major cities, it is likely the trend of more people living in apartments and more long term renters will become permanent and we need to accommodate this better with increased protections for renters.

‘In addition, we also need to ensure better transport and infrastructure to accommodate increased inner city density and to connect outer suburban developments to employment hubs.’

You can download a copy of the CEDA report here


Join WPI's cocktail party

Women’s Property Initiative is celebrating its 21st birthday with a cocktail party – and you are invited.  

Along with fine food, wine and music, there will be a silent auction with great prizes and you will hear from the wonderful women of WPI.  All funds raised will help continue to create new beginnings for women at risk of homelessness.

The party will be held on Thursday 14 September from 6.30pm - 9.30pm at Alpha60’s Chapter House, Level 2, 195 Flinders Lane

Tickets are $85 each. Click here to book.


Victorian Homelessness Conference 

The Homelessness Conference only comes around every two years – don’t miss out! The 2017 program is a cracker, with sessions covering:
  • Ireland, Denmark and Finland… who has succeeded in eliminating homelessness and how?
  • the roadblocks to accessing NDIS when you’re homeless
  • Aboriginal homelessness
  • therapy dogs and music therapy for young people
  • LGBTIQ homelessness.
Keynote speaker, Prof Eoin O’Sullivan, Editor of the European Journal of Homelessness will share insights from the northern hemisphere.

Click here for more information or book your place today via

Day passes are available.


Housing Hub launch

The Housing Hub has just been launched! It is a new way for people with disability to find suitable housing. Visitors to can:
  • view and connect with available vacancies from a range of providers
  • look at a library of useful information about housing options and planning to move 
  • tell developers what type of housing they are looking for
  • provide feedback on their experience of the website.
As the website becomes more well known and the NDIS housing market matures, the number and range of vacancies will continue to grow.  The website currently lists a range of new NDIS Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) housing, and DHHS SDA vacancies are soon to come online.

The Housing Hub is currently being tested in the NEMA and NSW Hunter New England regions to make sure that it is accessible and user-friendly, with the intent to scale the site in the near future.
 If you are interested in advertising your properties free of charge on The Housing Hub,

email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and a team member will be in touch. To find out more, please visit


Vale Fiona Richardson MP

CHFV was saddened by the premature death of Hon. Fiona Richardson MP – Minister for Women, and Australia's first Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence, at the age of 50.

A passionate advocate for the safety of women and children, Minister Richardson played a key role in making family violence a priority for the government and she also developed Victoria's first Gender Equality Strategy.

Ask Izzy for family violence help

Ask Izzy, an app that connects people with housing, meals, health and wellbeing services, support and counselling has received extra funding to raise awareness of its features for those fleeing domestic violence and the service providers who work with them.
Click here to read more.

New date for CIMS intro

The Department of Health and Human Services has developed a new client incident management system (CIMS) to be used by its funded services including public housing and homelessness assistance and disability services with an newly announced implementation date of January 15, 2018 to enable service providers to access further IT support and training.
Click here for details on CIMS.

NDIS report released

The NDIS Specialist Disability Accommodation: Pathway to a mature market report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Summer Foundation has been released and sets out a comprehensive vision and framework to grow the NDIS’ Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) sector.  

Click here to download the report.


Who wants to work for CHFV?


Grab the rare opportunity to have an impact on Victoria’s housing affordability crisis in this challenging role as a policy and projects manager for the Community Housing Federation of Victoria (CHFV).

In this part-time role, you will play a critical role in policy development, project management and advocacy for the community housing industry body. You will be working closely with our member organisations, government and other stakeholders to develop, promote and represent the sector.

Click here for details.


What role for a National Housing Supply Council?

Professor Hal Pawson, Associate Director at City Futures Research Centre at UNSW argues that a new National Housing Supply Council would have its work cut out for it in an article for the NSWFHA…

The NHSC was set up back in 2008 by the Rudd government as part of Labor’s package to respond to the growing housing unaffordability problem with an evidence-based policy approach. In design it closely paralleled the UK Government’s National Housing and Planning Advice Unit (NHPAU),

NHSC’s remit was to publish annual state of supply reports  to forecast and analyse adequacy of land supply and construction activity to meet demand and improve affordability over a 20 year forecast period. The reports had to incorporate an assessment of factors inhibiting sufficient housing supply output including development control issues and infrastructure provision. Its terms of reference specifically focused on supply and affordability for households in the lower half of the income distribution.

The NHSC was popular not just with planners, the affordable housing lobby and academics but also with the development industry, leading one former member to suggest it had become ‘a resource for industry’.  That said its membership included respected housing economists such as Saul Eslake and Judy Yates, senior planning experts including Sue Holliday and Dyan Currie, as well as representatives from the house building industry e.g. Stockland’s CEO.

In practice its main focus was on quantifying the relationship between overall housing supply and household growth. In its last State of Supply report (2011) it estimated that the gap between total underlying demand and supply to ‘have increased to a cumulative shortfall of 186K dwellings since 2001’. To ensure robust analyses and housing supply forecasts the NHSC enhanced data availability on such crucial factors as land supply pipelines, demolition and contributors to underlying demand.

It was not all plain sailing, and its momentum suffered somewhat from a rapid succession of housing ministers each with different priorities. Perhaps the lesson is that any new NHSC would be better established as a statutory authority independent of ministers.

Proposals coming forward for a ‘re-energised’ NHSC  from Labor would expand its original remit to also monitor state/territory performance against housing affordability targets enshrined in new National Housing and Homeless Agreements (NHHA).  This would be welcomed by anyone concerned about the absence of any robust housing needs information.

Affordable housing shortage estimates and projections are needed to underpin national and state level strategies to address the problem and to support the case for significant market interventions to generate affordable housing, whether these are planning mechanisms such as inclusionary zoning or financial subsidies.

The new NHSC must also explicitly reject the assumption that addressing housing unaffordability requires simply more housing supply. The problem is also about the distribution of housing, the type of housing required to meet changes in household types and not least tax and benefit systems that have contributed to growing ‘housing inequality’.  A rejuvenated NHSC will have a lot to do.

Training updates

Accredited first aid training

Did you know you should refresh your first aid training every three years? Book in for a one-day accredited first aid training course at CHFV.

  • learn First Aid – learn what to do, when and how
  • covers a broad range of First Aid techniques
  • includes CPR Certification

Dates:         Monday 25 Sept 2017 
Time:          9.00am – 5 PM (Morning tea and Lunch is provided)
Venue:       CHFV, Level 1, 128 Exhibition St. Melb.       
Cost:           $264 (GST inclusive) member  - $275 (GST inclusive) non-member
Trainer:      St John

For all booking and inquiries about this training, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or download the registration form/tax invoice here.


Keen to improve your skills, confidence and leadership ability?

CHFV has developed a new package of training opportunities in response to frustration from sector HR staff about the lack of professional development opportunities for experienced workers.

Eligibility for the six-month program is restricted to workers with at least two years’ tenancy experience or those who have completed the CHFV Induction Program. 

The training includes interactive scenarios to increase workers’ confidence and competency in real-life situations. Each unit is covered in a half-day session at CHFV’s Melbourne-CBD training facility.

Click here for details.


CHFV training program

CHFV’s training schedule for July to December 2017 is now available to view online with more than 25 short courses available.

Click here for details on our courses or contact our Training Coordinator Holly to request a tailored in-house training course.

Registration details will be distributed by email approximately one month prior to the course, seminar or events and bookings will be accepted from that time.


In the news

New Community For Melbourne’s West A Big Boost To Affordable Housing
Creating Better Apartments And Public Space In Victoria
It’s Time For Melbourne’s Inner Suburbs To Have Their Say
Helping Renters Make A House Into A Home
Housing And Education Renewal In North Melbourne
More Housing Support Throughout Victoria
Young architects, investors and residents are rewriting the rule book on inner-city apartment living
What does a train and SDA have in common?

In case you missed it

CHFV submissions to various consultations:

National Housing Policy
Joint community housing peaks submission response to the Productivity Commission draft ‘Introducing Competition and Informed User Choice into Human Services: Identifying Sectors for Reform Study Report’ – July 2017 Click here

State Housing Policy 

  • Statewide Housing Register: CHFV Principles Paper - Click here...
  • Access to Community Housing in Victoria - Click here...
  • CHFV 2016-2017 State Budget Submission: Delivering on the promise of a strong and sustainable housing sector - Click here...
  • Community housing and public accountability in Victoria: Community Housing is not Privatisation - Click here...
  • Better asset management - Click here...
  • Improving Transitional Housing - Click here...
  • Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities, Submission by the Community Housing Federation of Victoria - Click here...
  • Royal Commission into Family Violence; Joint Peaks Submission van be accessed here, the CHFV Submission can be downloaded here... 
  • Community Housing in Victoria, Who do we house? - Challenging the Myths - Click here... 
  • Value Proposition, Making the Case for Public Housing Transfers to Community Housing Organisations - Click here...
  • Reforming Victoria's Privacy Legislation - Click here...
  • Family Violence Information Sharing - Click here...

Residential Tenancy Act Review

  • Submission to Infrastructure Victoria's "All things considered" - Click here...
  • Laying the Foundations Victoria’s 30-year infrastructure strategy  - Click here... 
  • Community Housing Sector ‘Inclusionary Zoning’ Position and Capacity Statement - Click here...
  • Better Apartments, CHFV's brief submission on the discussion paper - Click here...

Commonwealth & NDIS 
  • Joint Submission on the Smart Cities Plan - Click here...
  • Response to the Affordable Housing Working Group Issues Paper - Click here...
  • Submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS - Click here...
  • Submission on the NDIS Specialist Disability Accommodation Pricing and Payments Framework - Click here...
With thanks to our sponsors and partners: 



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Community Housing Federation of Victoria
Level 1
128 Exhibition St
MelbourneVictoria 3000