SOCIAL housing properties in Orange sit vacant long enough for arsonists to set them on fire, yet there are 433 applicants on the waiting list.
They could be waiting for a very long time.
Data obtained from the Department of Family and Community Services shows the wait for homes in Orange with one or two bedrooms is five to 10 years, and the wait for three and four-bedroom properties is two to five years.
Two unoccupied social housing properties have been burnt in suspicious circumstances in the last three months, one in South Terrace last weekend and one in Spring Street in July.
Member for Orange Andrew Gee condemned the arson attacks and said he wanted the waiting lists in Orange to decrease.
“The burning of houses is atrocious,” he said.
“However, last week I was in Glenroi to meet with residents, who told me that while things in the area may still not be perfect, they are much better than they were two years ago.
“Tensions in the area have decreased.”
The data was made public in a bid by the department to be more transparent.
Family and Community Services Minister Pru Goward said she had hoped to make the system more fair by releasing the data.
There are 1236 social housing properties in Orange.
In the 12 months to June, 43 new properties were constructed in Orange, but 37 remain unoccupied.
Of the 37, 25 are vacant due to tenant relocation or transition from public housing and will be refurbished before being re-let.
There are 12 properties for sale in Orange, with the proceeds to be reinvested in the portfolio.
In the 2012/13 financial year 33 properties were sold in Orange and this year six have been sold since July.
There are no houses listed for demolition, but two were demolished last year. In the last financial year 101 applicants were rehomed.
Mr Gee said there was room for improvement in Orange to reduce the waiting list, but pointed out Orange residents faired better than Bathurst.
The waiting list in Bathurst for one and four-bedroom properties is two to five years, while the waiting list for two and three-bedroom properties is more than 10 years.
There are 353 applicants on the housing register and 62 applicants were housed in the last year.