Jun 7, 2023Liked by Cameron Murray

Hi Dr

When I heard you on a podcast last week I thought I had to set everything aside to go through your work. I feel like we are living in important times and I want to say I did my best but I know I can't do it alone.

Something you said during one of your interviews was that for the game of mates to be stopped it has to come up against a bigger game of mates and it reminded me of an article I'll link here.


It sounds like if we can't get reform at the government level yet then we should attempt to build an island of justice in a sea of injustice.

If we can't get 100% of the economic rents made common property then maybe we can get the large majority common on our little island in return for investors bankrolling the process with long term returns.

I have tried mapping the numbers with a spreadsheet and found that a developer using this model would be losing a moderate linear return for a much larger cumulative return in the long run with a 20-30 year crossover of the projections. I'll link this but I'd really like to know if you see any major problems with the model in the first link.


If you aren't familiar with it and you could find the time to share your insight I would be grateful. I'm looking for the checkmate move that spreads because it is a better game.

Not sure if your still in brisbane or your now in Sydney, I'd be happy to fly down to meet with you if this is a potential idea that could work and the right team built around it.

Your a legend

Tom White



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Thanks Tom!

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Mar 17Liked by Cameron Murray

(BTW - Dan Sullivan is the author of the Saving Communities website. Georgist in the U.S. Not sure if you know him, but can put you in contact if you want to discuss anything he's written.)

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Feb 6, 2022Liked by Cameron Murray

As an ex banker I think this is a great idea. Further consideration to counter existing market issues: Would there be some criteria around residency status and usage? Ie properties must be occupied. Not bought and held. Australian Residents only.

How do you control who occupies or not? Implement use of smart metres in properties to ascertain average usage of facilities. Water, power etc.

Is 7 years too long? Maybe reduce to 3 or 5 years. Or build in an incentive to stay. The penalty could be increased and a sliding scale attached. Consider a one bedroom apartment and within 7 years, 7 children!

Beware unintended consequences of a lock in contract.

Conversely could you build in an incentive to only sell to a specified candidate? I.e. the govt could take a cut of the sale or surrender it if sold to an under 34 FHB.

There could be a wait list, like Housing Dept, for people wanting to purchase. This would be after your initial lottery. Alternatively, you could have part lottery and part waiting list, by date order.

So many options, so much opportunity.

Good luck, I think it's the best thing we've seen in a long time that can help our young people and doesn't benefit the pockets of the developers. NO GRANTS!

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Cameron, great ideas. If I understand you correctly, there should never be a shortage of land to do the build. The government can create the money to pay for the land. It would then have an appreciating asset on one side of the ledger and a fixed amount of money on issue on the liability side. The money would flow into the economy, but it would be unlikely to increase consumption, as the people holding the land as 'investment' who sold out, would most likely be looking to re-invest in property, which may push up the price of other properties, so existing owners may benefit, while first home buyers get in via the government scheme?.

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Love this! I was not aware you had put this proposal together.

I would be stoked if this could be actioned in the form you have described, however I have the two small critiques:

- Australia has largely lost the institutional capacity to build mass social housing that we once had. Appreciate that you're saying we should build that up again (and we should), but I'd like to see as much immediate action in the social housing space as possible.

- My city planning brain is loathe to consolidate social housing where it is cheapest and most convenient (govt - owned land) - instead of dispersing it throughout our cities and desirable areas with access to infrastructure. In my mind, we need to get to a state where social housing is evenly dispersed throughout our cities. Like in Singapore, we want everyone going to the same schools, building relationships with one another - being in each other’s lives.

With this in mind, what do you think of the following as an addition to your policy:

What if the Government committed to buying (x) percentage of all new housing developments in existing urban areas where more housing is desired? The government would purchase these properties off the plan and sell them / rent them at an affordable cost.

Say a developer proposes to build a set of ten townhouses in an inner suburb. The Government would then commit to buying one of those townhouses for the purpose of providing subsidised housing for those who need it. This would also give developers more confidence in knowing they have one less townhouse to sell.

Now expand this to the macro scale - feasibility for new housing would increase, cities would meet population growth in a more sustainable way, more lower-income workers would be able to live closer to their job etc.

Most importantly in the context of your policy proposal, this would allow the government to start creating social housing immediately, rather than having to build the institutional capacity of a major public developer.

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Yep, there are many ways to just buy new homes today from private developers as the institutional capacity takes time to build.

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The CFMEU could make a difference if it had two clues to rub together. It's a pity that we can't breed politicians like Lee Kuan Yew.

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You know Cameron, you have quickly become one of my favorite Economists, alongside Bill Mitchell & Stephanie Kelton.

Also, what about (for electoral popularity reasons), the Govt "building homes free to the tax payer", by the tenant's rent covering the cost, or sold at cost price?

Or perhaps a combination of Govt Insurance for landlords and an Empty Housing Tax? The former would be because some Housing is apparently off the market because of a failure of Private Insurance to do their own job; & the latter is to get empty homes on the market.

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This is a great idea. But I would like to know, Cameron, what you think about using what I call "When we're Dead Laws" to get this into policy one day? That means politicians or Voters voting on policies that only come into effect in 25 years, when their own selfish interest is no longer conflicting with Public Interest? Couldn't this be how to get pro-Housing policies in, even though currently the majority may not want to solve the Housing Crisis (hard to know exactly what percentage of Australians do & don't want a Housing Crisis).

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2 to 3 bedroom apartments in high rise. A good option for Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

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A proposal worth considering by any sitting govt in Australia. I am glad that you have looked further ashore and considered what has worked for housing in Singapore. Has the Liberal or Labor party entertained your research. Look at how London has implemented a system like the electronic road pricing in Singapore that has addressed traffic in the CBD. Yes, Singapore is just a dot in the map and its public servants from Lee Kuan Yew's era have developed brilliant ideas. To the Australian government, I say look into it and see how it can be adapted to address the escalating housing prices in Australia that have prevented the younger generation from entering the property market in Sydney and Melbourne, in particular. The problem is only when there is an election is the housing shortage given a serious look and used as a tool to win votes.

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A superb proposal, we just need people to get on board. Show your support and spread the word here: https://me.getup.org.au/petitions/affordable-housing-now-via-housemate

and here: https://epetitions.act.gov.au/CurrentEPetition.aspx?PetId=214&lIndex=-1

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