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Build-to-rent-to-buy concept set to help at-risk women

A new partnership exploring how the build-to-rent-to-buy (BtRtB) model could help at-risk and vulnerable women become home owners is underway.

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) signed the memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Ginninderry – a joint venture between the ACT government’s Suburban Land Agency (SLA), Riverview Developments (Riverview) – and Community Housing Canberra (CHC) to develop the women’s housing initiative.

The partnership will develop the proof-of-concept model in the coming six months, as well as review and identify potential sites in Ginninderry, ACT and explore an appropriate funding model to support the initiative.

The BtRtB model will provide renters with the ability to transition to home ownership, according to Ginninderry joint venture project director, Stephen Harding.

“As a hypothetical example under BtRtB, a woman living in rental housing would pay affordable rent (at 74.9 per cent of market rent) to a CHP over a 10 year rental period,” Mr Harding said. 

“In that time, the woman could benefit from a savings plan, created on her behalf and potentially funded by NHFIC’s lower cost of financing combined with the CHP’s operational efficiencies.

“At the end of the period, the woman has the option to buy the housing, adjusting for her share in any capital growth, and also benefitting from the savings plan accumulated over 10 years.”

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As vulnerable women’s housing needs are increasingly in focus, NHFIC chief executive Nathan Dal Bon, is hopeful this initiative will provide greater opportunities to home ownership for at-risk women. 

“We’re particularly excited that this bold initiative puts NHFIC at the forefront of housing finance innovation and could be leveraged more broadly to support vulnerable and at-risk women across Australia,” Mr Dal Bon said.

“And we’re thrilled to work with CHC and private sector partners through the Ginninderry Joint Venture.”

The Minister for Housing and Suburban Development, Yvette Berry MLA, said: “This initiative is a fantastic opportunity and supports the ACT Government’s commitment to putting housing first for those that need it in our community. 

“I am excited to see the new opportunities that this collaboration will bring for this part of the community housing sector.” 

Should the pilot proceed, it is anticipated that construction could commence later in 2022.

[Related: Couple first to own home under rent to own scheme]

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