TREASURER Scott Morrison today urged young families being locked out of their home ownership dreams to forget about Sydney and think about Tamworth as an option to buy a house.
Mr Morrison talked up Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce's decentralisation strategy as one of several means of addressing the nation's growing housing affordability problem.
Mr Morrison visited Tamworth in Mr Joyce's northern NSW electorate over the weekend, meeting developers, builders and other business owners.
"On Saturday afternoon I was looking at these housing developments because one of the areas we're working on there is Barnaby's already championing getting some big government department agencies out of Canberra and putting them into regional areas, and this is a good thing," he told 2GB's Ray Hadley today.
"For young people who are thinking about, 'Can I buy a house in Sydney or can I buy a house in Melbourne or Brisbane?' or things like that, there is an option if people want to take it in places like Tamworth.
"That doesn't mean they have to, but it's important these towns can say to people 'you can have a future here', and there's a great future for families in Tamworth."
Mr Morrison said the upcoming budget would focus on putting downward pressure on the increase in house prices in markets such as Melbourne and Sydney.
"The most important way you do that is you free up supply," he said.
"The reason prices go up is when you get too many people wanting to buy and not enough stock, so you have to address that imbalance that is there, and that's about planning, it's about development, it's about how much it costs to build a home, the cost of developing a site."
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