Equity Housing Model

The Equity Housing Model is an innovative housing idea that was Vigilanti’s submission into the City of Sydney – Alternative Housing Ideas Challenge in 2019.

Our entry is 1 of 7 shortlisted from over 200+ entries, and will be further developed under a honorarium agreement with the City.

The Equity Housing Model is a further development of existing affordable housing development strategies, such as the Tripod Model, Nightgale Housing Model and community housing, further tailored to the Sydney housing market.

Its aim is to deliver truly affordable housing stock in a range of financial arrangements that focuses on long term housing and housing security instead of profit and asset generation. The model also proposes a viable financial model that minimises the need for government subsidies to ensure long term economic viability. Most importantly, the model allows for housing development on public land without the sale of public land.

The financial model also takes into account that the housing stock developed will be rented or sold at prices set to affordable multipliers of median income, which is well below market rate, rather than discounted market rates. This ensures that the housing stock will be truly affordable and not subject to the volatility of prices in the housing market. The model is targeted at delivering Mixed Socio-Economic Housing, with the sale and rental of private, affordable and social housing comprising the balanced financial model.

What are the benefits?

  • Does not rely on government financial subsidy as all development and ongoing maintenance costs are covered in the financial model.


  • Land that is provided by the government is only leased, not sold, and ownership is retained in public hands in perpetuity. After the end of the lease period, the government is able to repurpose the land for other uses as suits the needs of the time.


  • Delivers housing at truly affordable prices as leasing and rental price points are set against median income and not subject to market manipulation or volatility.


  • Delivers housing for anyone who needs housing, not just the very low incomes.


  • Provides long term housing security through lifelong leaseholds rather than renting without end, which will help improve the long term financial health of young families.


  • Is financially viable, repeatable and scalable to deliver large quantities of affordable housing very quickly, depending on amount of land available and current planning restrictions.


  • It encourages low income residents to increase their income without fear of losing their eligibility for affordable housing. Their rents are adjusted accordingly and the increased revenue can be used to develop future housing.


  • Housing developed cannot be used for speculative development, investment, inheritance or other forms of wealth accumulation so will not contribute to the worsing affordability of housing. The focus is on providing housing, not generating the greatest financial return.


  • The low prices of housing developed will act as a damper on the private market as it provides a lower cost and higher quality alternative in the housing market, incentivising private housing developers to provide better private housing through market forces.

How Can I Find Out More?

As part of Stage 2 of the Alternative Housing Ideas Competition, we will be hosting a number of focus groups to understand how we can best tailor this model to real world citizens. We need input from as broad a community as possible so we can be sure we are catering to the right people and this will become an attractive option for those struggling with private market housing.

The focus groups will be separated into:

  1. Residents
  2. Financing
  3. Management

If you are interested in participating in a focus group, or wish to find out more, please sign up using the link below: