This page provides information for the residential development industry about the creation of affordable housing through the State’s planning system.

Affordable housing is housing for people and households on incomes ranging from low to moderate, and includes both rental and home ownership.

It is priced so that low- and moderate-income households are able to meet essential basic living costs, with housing costing no more than 30% of weekly household income, either for mortgage or rent.

For affordable home ownership, the current price point for affordable housing is $417,000 in Greater Adelaide (PDF, 1.5 MB).

An increase to the affordable housing price point may be approved on application. See further information relating to price variances.

As a developer or builder, creating affordable housing will provide the following benefits:

  • access to planning incentives that may improve project yield and viability – such as reduced car parking requirements, smaller allotment sizes or extra building heights - see the Affordable Housing Overlay in the Planning and Design Code
  • access to State Government’s Affordable Housing Land Tax Concession through Revenue SA
  • reaching first-time home buyers who may have access to various grants and assistance to help them buy a home
  • a mix of both home ownership and rental opportunities, giving people more choice on how they can be a part of the community you are creating
  • a diversity of built form and prices of homes across your projects, which will allow a wide range of homebuyers to find a property that suits them.

The Government of South Australia encourages the creation of affordable housing by industry and supports this through:

In addition, the Commonwealth Government provides access to finance and government bonds through National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC). In order to access NHFIC funds there must be a partnership arrangement with a Community Housing Provider.

The SA planning system encourages developers and builders to provide affordable housing in their projects through the Planning and Design Code.  The Code includes an Affordable Housing Overlay that provides a consistent approach to delivering affordable housing across the State.

When submitting a development application you should:

  1. Check to see if your development is within the Affordable Housing Overlay.

The Overlay outlines that you should be addressing affordable housing for all projects over 20 dwellings, and for any size project potentially gives access to planning concessions such as smaller lot sizes, reduced car parking requirements, and extra building height / number of floors that can make developments more viable.

  1. Show your commitment to delivering affordable housing through a legally binding agreement – negotiated with SA Housing Authority.  Refer to fact sheets available under 'more information'.
  2. Arrange any pre-sales of homes to one of the types of eligible buyers.

Builders can sell to an eligible affordable rental provider (such as a community housing provider) at any price, or to an eligible home buyer at or below a set price, which is currently $417,000 in Greater Adelaide.

  1. When creating affordable housing for eligible home buyers, ensure that you can deliver the product to market at the affordable housing price point.   The HomeSeekerSA website will help you to reach eligible home buyers.

Different price points for affordable housing apply in other areas of the State and for vacant land.

  1. If homes are built close to public transport or with other benefits such as environmental features (to reduce ongoing living costs for future occupants) or innovative finance options such as shared equity, then the dwelling price can be increased by up to 15% with the Authority's approval.
Location Land purchase price Maximum purchase price for dwelling or house and land 10% Price variance ** 15% Price variance **
Greater Adelaide * $187,650 $417,000 $485,700 $479,550
Rest of State $152,660 $339,000 $372,900 $389,850

*As defined by Map 1 Greater Adelaide Region (PDF, 1.5 MB) of the 30 Year Plan for Greater Adelaide - 2017 update, a volume of the South Australian Planning Strategy, p31.

** Applications for price variances must be submitted to the SA Housing Authority. Please see Price Variance fact sheet under 'more information'.

  1. List properties for sale to affordable home buyers on the HomeSeeker SA website.  These listings are at no charge.

Read how developers have created their own innovative affordable housing product and benefited from a range of government programs and initiatives including planning concessions, sale of government land, and free property listings through HomeSeeker SA:

This section provides information to Council planning officers about the SA Housing Authority’s Local Affordable Housing Plan Toolkit which is intended as a practical step-by-step guide, supporting Councils through the process of developing their own local housing plans.

The toolkit provides an informative guide from initial data gathering of demographic indicators, trend analysis of housing demand and supply, community and stakeholder consultation, vision setting and prioritising objectives to achieve a strategy that delivers real change.

Use of the toolkit is voluntary and at the discretion of each Local Government.

Benefits of a Local Housing Plan can include:

  • attracting workers to a municipality or region
  • reduction of housing stress
  • positive labour market effects
  • alignment with overarching State and regional development strategies.

Resources contained within the toolkit include:

  • a 10-step process with recommended outcomes
  • comprehensive catalogue of free data resources
  • relevant examples from other jurisdictions
  • ready reckoner of key State and regional strategy documents
  • practical manual for evaluating options and determining priorities
  • recommended LAHP template
  • review methodology.

Implementation of the State-wide Planning and Design Code has embedded an affordable housing overlay through policy and applied a spatial layer across South Australia. The Affordable Housing Overlay has a referral trigger for residential development, comprised of 20 or more allotments, with at least 15% to be affordable housing (unless deemed-to-satisfy or designated performance features within the Code are met).

Download the Local Affordable Housing Plan Toolkit (PDF, 1.3 MB)