Media release

NHFIC Announces Launch of $1.5 Million Capacity Building Program

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) is pleased to announce the upcoming launch of its Capacity Building Program, a $1.5 million grant program to help community housing providers (CHPs) access NHFIC’s transformative financing to support the delivery of additional social and affordable rental homes.

Funded in the 2017-18 Federal Budget, the program is part of a broader package helping Australia’s CHPs grow in scale. Under the program eligible CHPs will be able to access grants of up to $20,000 for professional advisory services to help them with the upfront finance and business planning work required to support a NHFIC loan application.

The Community Housing Industry Association Limited (CHIA) will administer the Capacity Building Program on NHFIC’s behalf. The program opens for applications on 1 July 2019.

“In the less than 12 months since commencing operations, NHFIC has made rapid progress and achieved tremendous early success in helping expand and accelerate the delivery of more social and affordable housing in Australia,” said Nathan Dal Bon, NHFIC’s CEO.

“By providing a grant program that funds professional advisory services we aim to strengthen the ability of CHPs to access NHFIC’s lower cost, longer tenor finance and unlock more housing supply.”

CHIA CEO Wendy Hayhurst said the Association was delighted to be working with NHFIC to deliver the grants program.

“There are many smaller specialist and regionally based community housing organisations that have potential projects that will deliver great benefits to their tenants and communities,” Ms Hayhurst said.

“Being able to get upfront advice to help prepare the proposal could turn the idea into reality.”

Michael Lennon, CHIA Chair said “These grants are a fantastic resource available to the community housing sector, at a time when it is growing rapidly. There’s huge unmet demand for affordable housing in Australia, and NHFIC’s social bond-funded loans are cutting-edge by world standards”.

The design of the Capacity Building Program was finalised following a comprehensive stakeholder consultation process which included workshops in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. The program will provide consultancy services covering four key areas:

  • Finance: project and business financial modelling, fund raising, financial risk analysis and key ratios
  • Business planning: project and business planning, preparation of business cases, forming partnerships, monitoring results
  • Property development: developing or procuring new social and affordable housing, mixed tenure, sustainable and accessible property design, urban planning, place making
  • Risk management: understanding risks (business, financial, policy, governance etc.) and managing, monitoring and mitigating risk.

More information:

Ben Haslem | 0408 887 742 | Wells Haslem Mayhew

John Stott | 0422 296 872  | CHIA