Canberra 'urgently' needs more retirement housing: Property Council
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Canberra 'urgently' needs more retirement housing: Property Council

Canberra has an "urgent need" for more retirement living options to accommodate an ageing population, the ACT Property Council says.

The latest ANZ and Property Council survey found expectations for growth in retirement housing had fallen slightly in the ACT, but the territory remained the sector's most confident market in the nation.

New housing under construction in Coombs in 2017.

New housing under construction in Coombs in 2017.Credit:Sitthixay Ditthavong

ACT Property Council executive director Adina Cirson said the council was concerned demand for retirement housing was outstripping supply as Canberra's population grew.

With the number of people aged over 65 in Canberra expected to increase from 53,000 in 2018 to 95,000 in 2041, the council said the need for more retirement living options would continue to grow.

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If the trend continues, 120,000 seniors will call the city home by 2050.

"Our housing typology needs to reflect and meet the future needs of our city and a fuller understanding of the density that needs to be created," Ms Cirson said.

"This is critical to long term planning for our future residents."

According to the council's survey, confidence in the ACT's property sector has dropped four points to 130, the second-highest rating in the nation behind South Australia. A score of 100 on the index is considered neutral.

The survey also found that expectations of available property sector work in the ACT remained the nation's highest, despite falling more than 10 points from the last survey.

Confidence in the ACT government is up more than 20 points from the same time last year, but remains in the negative along with confidence in the territory's economic performance.

"The ACT is one of the fastest growing regions in Australia. We continue to push the ACT government for streamlined planning approvals, and the right tax framework and incentives in place to encourage development where and when it is needed," Ms Cirson said.

There has been a slight improvement in confidence in the federal government, she said.

Confidence in staffing levels for the industry over the next year has stayed steady, and while forward work schedule confidence has dropped, it remains the highest in the country.

The survey also found national property industry confidence has dropped to its lowest level in more than five years.

Jasper is a reporter for The Canberra Times.

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