Ann Apps, The University of Newcastle, Australia

Housing the ‘missing middle’ – Limited Equity Housing Co-operatives can deliver advantages over private rental for those who cannot afford home ownership.

The growing number of people who are in the ‘missing middle’ between social housing and home ownership are disadvantaged by a lack of intermediate tenure options in Australia. Renting is expensive and precarious. The Limited Equity Housing Co-operative (LEHC) is an intermediate tenure that has some advantages over private rental for those that cannot afford home ownership. This paper explores the model and some reasons why it has not gained traction in Australia to date. Its categorisation as ‘governance’ property helps to explain the LEHCs potential as an alternative to strata title as a suitable tenure for apartment ownership. The article hopes to draw the attention of property lawyers and policy makers to the LEHC as a model that addresses some of the economic and social issues faced by those who find themselves in the ‘missing middle’.

Read the paper