Social housing is at crisis point for the Illawarra region, with some people waiting up top 10 years to secure housing, according to a new report.

A guide released by the Family and Community Services shows how long applicants will be waiting and the results are worrying, with nothing available sooner than two years.

Between the last official counts in 2006 and 2011, the homeless population of Wollongong rose 84 per cent, unemployment was higher and workforce participation was lower than state and national averages. With factors like the gradual downsizing of Bluescope Steel, the unemployment rate will continue increasing over the next four years.

Project Manager for Churches Housing Inc.Robert Powell establishes affordable housing. He said more affordable housing would reduce pressure on the social and emergency housing system.

“The issue is that the demand for social housing relies on a couple of factors, the greater the number of people become unemployed, the more they fall into the category of housing stress,” Mr Powell said.

“If the people who are losing their jobs aren’t already in housing stress then they will be soon.

“If the unemployment rate rises we won’t see immediate results, but at the end of the 10 years those at the bottom of the list will find extra waiting time. The only way to change that is to increase supply, the government needs to make more policies on affordable housing.”