Skip to main content
  • Share:

Proposed changes to Affordable housing scheme

State Environmental Planning Policy No. 70 – Affordable Housing (Revised Schemes) (SEPP 70)

The Department of Planning and Environment has sought your feedback on proposed changes to State Environmental Planning Policy No. 70 – Affordable Housing (Revised Schemes) (SEPP 70) and draft guideline for developing an affordable housing contribution scheme.


SEPP 70 currently allows councils named in the SEPP to prepare an affordable housing contribution scheme (AHCS) for precincts, areas or developments within their local government area.


Affordable housing is for very low, low and moderate income households.


The NSW Government is responding to requests from local government to reduce red tape by proposing to include all councils across the State in SEPP 70. This will make it easier for councils to prepare affordable housing contribution schemes and increase affordable housing across NSW. 

Proposed changes

The amendments propose to: 

  • amend SEPP 70 to include all local government areas. This will mean councils will no longer need to seek the Minister’s approval to be included in SEPP 70.
  • amend the definition of affordable housing in SEPP 70, so that household income outside of Sydney region is accounted for in the SEPP. 
  • amend one of the affordable housing principles in SEPP 70 to clarify that affordable housing is to be made available for very low, low and moderate-income households or any combination of these households

The Department also sought feedback on the accompanying draft guideline. The draft guideline aims to assist councils by clearly stating what they need to provide to government when developing an Affordable housing contribution scheme.


Anticipated impacts of the changes


Including all councils in SEPP 70 will remove red tape and assist councils to more easily progress affordable housing contribution schemes. 


The Government is committed to ensuring that affordable housing contribution rates set by council do not impact on development viability. The proposed changes will ensure a consistent approach to setting the contribution rates and developing affordable housing contribution plans.

This will provide more certainty for councils and help the development industry plan for contribution costs earlier.

Download the Explanation of Intended Effect and draft guideline for more details.

Have your say

Engagement is now closed and feedback is being considered.

The proposed changes and draft guideline were on exhibition for you to have your say from 30 November 2018 – 19 December 2018.


Or write to: 

Director, Housing Policy
Department of Planning and Environment
GPO Box 39  
Sydney  NSW 2000

Published submissions will include your name and the organisation on whose behalf you may be writing. Contact details such as email and postal addresses, and telephone numbers are not published. The Department reserve the right to not publish selected submissions (in full or part).


Please read our privacy statement.

For more information

  • email
  • call 13 77 88. For translation services phone 131 450

You can also subscribe to our newsletter for regular updates from the Department.

SEPP70 download list

Page last updated: 21/12/2018