Budget housing pledge to tackle NSW homelessness

Joel Carrett/AAP PHOTOS

Housing insecurity will be tackled in the upcoming NSW budget with big spending to be directed into reducing the social housing waitlist by increasing supply.

The package will also include funding to explore options in modular housing to build much-needed homes quicker.

The Minns Labor government will hand down its first budget in a matter of days, pledging to tackle the state's housing crisis head on.

A $224 million package will be allocated to strengthen the safety net for those experiencing housing insecurity and provide additional support services.

Housing Minister Rose Jackson said a secure house was more than just a piece of infrastructure, it was a home for people to raise their families.

"It is too hard for too many young people and young families in this state to have that home, we know that and we recognise the challenge," she told reporters.

Funding will extend access to temporary accommodation and provide a boost to the state's specialist homelessness services.

The package will include $70 million to accelerate social and affordable home builds, $35.3 million for housing services for Indigenous people and families and $35 million for maintenance to existing social housing.

It will also reserve $20 million for dedicated mental health housing, $15 million to boost homelessness services and $11 million in emergency funding for temporary accommodation.

NSW Premier Chris Minns said the package was designed to help break the cycle of homelessness.

"This announcement today will lift the amount of money that we're putting into maintenance so that we can bring more social housing online," he said.

"Increasing supply and removing a lot of the bureaucratic red tape we hope and believe will get better outcomes for families."

The premier promised this was "just the beginning" of government support for housing and acknowledged there was more to do to fix the crisis.

The opposition's housing spokesman Scott Farlow said the government would never be able to provide the number of homes it was promising.

He said the recent cancellation of a public housing development in the NSW mid north coast town of Coffs Harbour proved Labor wasn't serious about affordable housing.

"It's strange that the government would put $70 million towards accelerating the delivery of social and affordable homes, primarily in regional New South Wales, when just last week they cancelled much needed projects like the Argyll Estate redevelopment," Mr Farlow said.

"The question that Labor needs to answer is how they are going to fund their additional social housing commitments if they take the private sector out of the equation."

Mr Farlow called on the government to explain if its funding plan came out of the existing $300 million allocated for capital maintenance works by the previous coalition government.

Housing Now, a major alliance of business, unions and advocacy groups, said the community wanted to see investment in all types of housing options.

"It's very hard to enjoy the simple pleasures in life, raise a family, run a business or pursue a career when you are struggling to keep a roof over your head," alliance chair David Borger said.

"The increase in funding for public housing maintenance is essential to reducing the vacancy rate and ensuring valuable social housing does not sit idle while the public housing waiting list grows."