Nearly Half Of Melbourne’s New Housing Supply Needed For International Students To 2028

Written by:
18 July 2023
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“Melburnians already face rising rents, more costly mortgages, and ever deteriorating services and infrastructure that will only be made worse by the announced unplanned jump in its international student intake,” said Daniel Wild, Deputy Executive Director at the Institute of Public Affairs.

New research released today from the IPA shows the impact the federal government’s unplanned rise in net international student arrivals will have on Melbourne:

  • Last financial year, Melbourne saw more than 73,000 international students arrive, absorbing the equivalent of 80% of the new housing supply built in the period.
  • This financial year, a further 54,000 net international students will arrive, expected to absorb the equivalent of 64% of the predicted annual new housing supply.
  • From 2023 to 2028, the expected arrival of a net 223,000 international students could absorb 46% of Melbourne’s expected net new housing supply during the period.

“Migration has and will continue to be critical to our economic and social success into the future. However, many Melburnians are beginning to question the consequences of large, unplanned increases to migration settings that will only exacerbate their city’s housing shortage,” said Mr Wild.

“Given the size of this unplanned increase in the international student intake and Australia’s housing shortage, students will have no other option than to battle for properties alongside Melburnians also looking for housing.”

IPA research showed Australia is set to face a housing supply shortfall of over 252,000 homes between 2023 and 2028, with international students set to absorb 7 out of 10 new homes built in the same period nationwide.

“With major infrastructure projects such as the West Gate Tunnel running late, Airport Rail Link cancelled along with many others, Melbourne’s infrastructure will struggle to keep up with this extra, unplanned demand,” said Mr Wild.

“The federal government must ensure policies are in place to accommodate its unprecedented surge in international students on top of other increases to migration. It will be Melburnians who suffer with longer travel times and an inability to access vital services.”

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