DHA announces New Builds Volume Leasing Program

16th May 2024

Defence Housing Australia have recently announced the New Builds Volume Leasing Program to build newly constructed, high-quality properties for Townsville.

The Program comes following the strategic enhancements to Townsville's military capabilities, which include re-forming the city’s 3rd Brigade as the Army's only heavy combat formation from the recent Defence Strategic Review.

 This program will secure 500 newly constructed homes for Townsville.

Townsville Enterprise CEO, Claudia Brumme-Smith said we welcome this announcement from Defence Housing Australia, having worked closely with their team as part of the North Queensland Strategic Defence Working Group - established by Townsville Enterprise to deliver outcomes from the 2023 Defence Strategic Review.

"The New Builds Volume Leasing Program will construct 500 new high-quality properties across Townsville to accommodate additional personnel.

We knew from the outset to accommodate these personnel - as part of the Australian Defence Force reposturing of Townsville as the nation's "Army Capital" - that housing would be an acute factor to resolve, and this program will certainly alleviate some of this housing strain; however - our job is not done.

Based off current approval rates and our project pipeline over the next five years, Townsville would have a shortfall of 4,220 dwellings. This initial 500 new homes is a huge step in the right direction, but we need to remain focused on securing a number of housing projects that will work to resolve our housing shortage."

Work with DHA to provide a long-term supply of newly constructed leased properties

Expressions of interest (EOIs) are now open for suppliers to deliver a long-term supply of a minimum of 500 new properties in Townsville, Queensland over the next five years to lease to DHA.

The opportunity is open to industry participants active in the development of land, building and/or sale of new dwellings to investors, or investment bodies looking for secure long-term leases on properties in their investment portfolios, under one of the following Delivery Models : 

·     Build to sell and lease – You have your own development land or you would source land from the market to construct houses on and sell to investors with a DHA lease commitment*. 

·     Build to retain and lease – You have your own development land or you would source land from the market to construct houses on and retain in your own investment portfolio to lease to DHA*. 

·     Corporate Investment – You are a corporate investor that would source properties from third parties to be developed/constructed on your behalf to retain in your own investment portfolio to lease to DHA*. 

·     Property Fund/Trust – You would create a Property Fund or Trust in which units would be owned by investors that would fund the development/construction of properties by third parties which you would lease to DHA*. 

*DHA will lease back the property if, on completion of construction of the property, DHA is satisfied that the property has been completed in accordance with DHA's requirements.

Expressions of interest are open until Thursday 27 June 2024. For more information on this program, visit https://www.dha.gov.au/  and register for upcoming industry briefings HERE.

Solving the Regional Housing Crisis

Outlined in our Unlock the North: Australia's Corridor of the Future document, Townsville Enterprise have already submitted a number of priority projects to all levels of Government. While last night's Federal Budget has largely overlooked North Queensland, we continue to remain strong with our advocacy for the following projects:

·     The Queensland Government to quarantine $150 million of the housing investment fund to be allocated to North Queensland, encouraging the development of new social and affordable housing projects.

·     $20 million from the Housing Investment Fund to be specifically allocated to the Townsville inner city high density developments.

·     $30 million to provide trunk infrastructure upgrades that will facilitate rapid housing development and make the North Rail Yards project competitive to South East Queensland.

View the full list of projects and policies that feature in our 2024 Government Budget Priority List HERE.

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