NSW Shared Equity housing initiative expands to support DV victim-survivors
The Minns Labor Government is today taking a meaningful step to better support victim-survivors of domestic and family violence, with the expansion of the Shared Equity Home Buyer Helper trial.
From 1 December, the eligibility criteria for the initiative will expand to include specific reference to domestic and family violence victim-survivors.
The expansion of the program means that domestic and family violence victim-survivors and other eligible applicants can now access the scheme.
The program delivers on the Minns Labor Government’s commitment to take meaningful action to combat domestic violence and support victim-survivors.
Domestic violence victim-survivors who participate in the Shared Equity program will see the NSW Government contribute up to 40% of the purchase price for a new home, or up to 30% for an existing home.
This will allow eligible applicants to secure a property with as little as a two% deposit.
Removing many of the barriers to home ownership, domestic and family violence victim-survivors who apply for the initiative will pay no interest on the government’s share of equity in the property they purchase. They will also not require lenders mortgage insurance.
Housing instability and homelessness are a major barrier for victim-survivors of domestic and family violence.
Women and children escaping domestic abuse account for 39% of specialist homelessness service users.
While domestic and family violence is the leading cause of homelessness for women, annually in Australia it is estimated that 7690 women a year return to perpetrators due to having nowhere affordable to live.
The NSW Government has expanded the Shared Equity program’s eligibility criteria after accepting the recommendations of the NSW Domestic and Family Violence Shared Equity Taskforce.
The taskforce was co-chaired by Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Jodie Harrison and Chief Executive Officer of Domestic Violence NSW Delia Donovan.
Treasurer Daniel Mookhey was also a member of the taskforce.
Lower income single parents, single people aged 50 years or older and first home buyer key workers who are nurses, midwives, paramedics, teachers, early childhood educators or police officers are still eligible for the Shared Equity program.
Get more information about eligibility on Shared Equity Home Buyer Helper.
NSW Premier, Chris Minns said:
“This is a practical step the NSW Government is taking to better support victim-survivors of domestic violence.
“No one should face the choice of returning to an unsafe environment or being homeless.
“We will continue to take a whole of government approach to responding to the scourge of domestic and family violence in NSW.”
Minister for Finance Courtney Houssos said:
“As a government we are committed to taking meaningful action to support victim-survivors of domestic violence.
“The expansion of the Shared Equity program will help reduce long term housing barriers for people experiencing family or domestic violence, by reducing the financial burden to buy a home.
“Revenue NSW and its lending partners are working to ensure the application process for domestic violence victim-survivors is sensitive and as seamless as possible.”
Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Jodie Harrison said:
“Temporary accommodation and refuges provide immediate housing support when a family escapes from violence but they are not a long-term solution.
“Opening up the Shared Equity Home Buyer scheme to victim-survivors of domestic violence is another way the NSW Government is taking considered steps to address the impacts of domestic violence across NSW.
“I’m pleased to be making this announcement during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence, to show the NSW Government’s strong commitment to helping women and children escaping domestic violence build a secure and safe future.”
CEO DVNSW Delia Donovan said:
“DVNSW supports efforts to create pathways to home ownership for victim-survivors of domestic and family violence.
“Expanding the Shared Equity program to victim-survivors who are in a position to pursue home ownership allows them to rebuild their lives knowing they have stable housing.
“This in turn contributes to building dignity, confidence and a sense of accomplishment, which are vital to recovery.
“An emphasis must also be placed on significantly increasing investment in social and affordable housing to create pathways out of abuse for all people experiencing violence.”