Hamilton’s original Future Proof report – housing affordability?

The first Future Proof report dates from 2008, which is also the first year Hamilton appears in the Demographia housing affordability survey. In 2008 the median house price was $356,800 and the median household income was $56,400, giving a median multiple rating of 6.3 (Median House Price / Median Household Income). In 2008 the Hamilton rating of 6.3 was termed severely unaffordable by the Demographia survey (p40). The Future Proof report was using a 2006 data start point, when Hamilton had 47,548 dwellings and a population of 134,400, giving it a ratio of 2.83 people per household (page 76 FutureProof 2008).

The first 2008 Future Proof (page 76) plan for 2021 was for Hamilton to have 60,998 dwellings and a population of 173,346, maintaining the 2006 ratio of 2.84 people per household. No one should be surprised that the Demographia 2020 survey produced a median house price for Hamilton of $580,000, a median household income of $83,000 and a Median Multiple rating of 7, which is more severely unaffordable than in the 2008 report.

Note: I read the above text as saying that Future Proof projections for Hamilton city are based on there being 60,800 households in 2020. I believe that parts of the report are not written to be easily readable.
Future Proof – Housing Development Capacity Assessment 2021 – Page 44

What the first 2008 Future Proof report did get right was its prediction that ‘the City population is expected to reach 200,000 by the 2030s’(p3), which lines up with Hamilton’s latest long term plan (link). The Future Proof plan also predicted that ‘…the biggest growth in family types is among couples without children and single-parent families, and the biggest growth in household types is among single-person households, in line with expectations about family and household change at the national level’ (P22). A blog post using 2013 census data also showed this trend and the latest 2021 Future Proof report on ‘Housing Development Capacity Assessment 2021’ confirms this again – “around half (49%) of Hamilton’s households are 1-2 person households. This is projected to increase to just over half (53%) of households by 2050, accounting for 59% of the growth in households. A share of this will occur as retirement demand, with existing households decreasing in size as children leave home and form new households” (p45).

Hamilton’s 2018 census counted 160,911 people living in 58,449 dwellings, giving a ratio of 2.75 people per dwelling, which is a better outcome than the first Future Proof had planned for. The latest 2021 future Proof plan for 2030 is for a total of (60,800 + 14,300) 75,100 dwellings for a population of 200,000 people giving a ratio of 2.66 people per dwelling. But of concern is the Hamilton City Council’s latest long term plan, which writes about having (53,000 + 12,500 (Link)) 65,500 households in the next ten years, maintaining a higher ratio of 3 people per dwelling around the year 2030. This should worry people hoping to see the ratio of people per dwelling decline, reflecting the need for increased demand for more affordable 1- to 2-person entry-level dwellings.

Three dwellings on single section

Update: Hamilton City Council (District Plan meeting 15/12/21 page 18) has updated minimum dwellings to be built years 2020-2030 to 14,300 dwellings. 53,000+14,300=67,300 reducing the ratio to 2.97 people per dwelling and the Government has passed the ‘Enabling Housing Supply’ 14/12/21, this should also help allow more housing suitable for 1 to 2 person households to be built.

Category: News

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