"To me, the top priorities here are getting the clean-up done, getting people into homes and getting financial support out for those who need it," he told the Nine Network on Friday.
"We want people out of evacuation centres and into their own homes."
The NSW government has announced a $551 million housing support package for 25,000 households, jointly funded with the federal government.
However, coordinating housing for flood survivors was going to be a "significant challenge" Mr Perrottet warned.
The clean-up also poses a significant challenge with tonnes of debris and household waste remaining after the floods.
"We have around 4,000 tonnes every day of debris being collected. It is a massive operation. It will take weeks and months," Mr Perrottet said.
The package includes:
* $285 million for temporary housing, including a $248 million 16-week rental support scheme
* $10 million for 120 motorhomes, with 20 to arrive on Sunday
* $20 million for temporary "pod" housing
* $4.5 million for long-term housing
* $2.5 million to hire recreation camps
* $150,000 for the Australian Red Cross to provide housing through Airbnb and Stayz.
Some $90 million has been set aside for the clean-up across 28 local government areas.
Asked if he had urged Prime Minister Scott Morrison to declare the Northern Rivers region a natural disaster zone sooner, the premier said it was "only relevant to coordination at a commonwealth level".
"In NSW, we set up our state emergency operation centre immediately," he said.
The premier said the state emergency management centre is able to bring in all NSW government agencies with "that whole-of-government coordination".
"We don't have a declaration in place because that coordination is in place."
Mr Perrottet was also asked on Nine whether he would "get rid" of Resilience NSW, the agency responsible for disaster recovery and community resilience.
"It would be remiss of any government to not look at what went well, what could have been better, and make those improvements," he responded. "That is what I'm committed to doing."
Federal opposition leader Anthony Albanese questioned why it was taking the prime minister "days and days into this disaster" to declare a national emergency.
"The parliament gave the prime minister and the government powers to do that after the experience of the bushfires," he told the ABC from Lismore on Friday.
Why is it that it took the prime minister to have a visit for that to occur?"
Mr Albanese said flood-affected Ballina residents had told him they were traumatised and were having difficulty accessing government support.
"What we need when there is a natural disaster is people on the ground, face-to-face, providing people with that support, getting the message out there that there is somewhere people can go."
Meanwhile, Sydney Trains says commuters face ongoing delays after wild weather caused extensive damage to the network across Greater Sydney.
The damage includes landslips in Pymble, Casula and Emu Plains and a sinkhole in Leura.
"We are working on over 100 at-risk sites across the network, including debris on rail lines and damaged high voltage infrastructure due to the strong winds and heavy rainfall," Sydney Trains CEO Matt Longland said on Friday.
On Friday, flood levels on the Hawkesbury River were beginning to recede and were at moderate river heights at North Richmond, Windsor, Sackville and Lower Portland, and minor heights at Wiseman's Ferry.
Looking ahead, showers and thunderstorms are forecast for inland NSW this weekend as a trough deepens over the west, the Bureau of Meteorology said on Friday.
Rainfall is also expected on the coast as a high pressure weather system pushes winds east.