Housing Affordability Stress - Anglicare Survey
30 April 2012 at 3:04 pm
A national Housing Affordability Snapshot has shown that across Australia, people on low incomes are potentially living in housing stress, spending more than 30% of their income on housing costs.
The Anglicare Australia Rental Affordability Snapshot is an annual project surveying the affordability of rental properties for people living on a low income in Australia.
Over 65,000 properties were audited across 16 localities on the Snapshot weekend. As with 2011, the 2012 results are stark for anyone living on a low income included in which is federal income support and the minimum wage.
Anglicare says it hits hardest people living on low incomes such as Government pensions and allowances and even the minimum wage.
Anglicare says the Federal Government must lead the action with comprehensive strategies matching the length and breadth of this national issue.
The Snapshot found that the percentage of affordable private rental properties in Greater Sydney and the Illawarra for households receiving Government payments remains at staggeringly low levels of less than one percent.
“Currently 0.6 percent of private rentals in Sydney and the Illawarra are affordable for low income households, compared with 1.3 percent in 2011”, said Grant Millard CEO ANGLICARE Sydney.
“Our Rental Affordability Snapshot found just 25 affordable private rental properties in Sydney and only one within 20 kilometres of the Sydney CBD.”
On the weekend of 13 – 14 April 2012, ANGLICARE Sydney surveyed 11,448 advertised private rental properties in Greater Sydney and the Illawarra to assess their affordability for households relying on Government payments and households receiving the minimum wage.
“Single person households and single parents have the least options for affordable rentals costing less than 30 percent of gross income. There were only three affordable properties for a single parent with two children who receives the parenting payment”, said Mr Millard.
In contrast one quarter of private rentals were affordable for households on the minimum wage. The most appropriate private rentals for a family cost between 30 and 45 percent of gross income.
In Melbourne the survey found that only 2% of rental housing is affordable to single parents on minimum wage.
Anglicare Victoria says the survey reveals a desperate lack of affordable housing in Melbourne for those surviving on income support or bringing home minimum wage.
Of the 15,429 properties listed on realeastate.com.au for rent on Friday 13 April, only two per cent were affordable to single-parent working families on minimum income while no properties were affordable for singles on minimum wage or those on income support including Newstart, Parenting Payment, Youth Allowance or the Aged Pension.
Anglicare Victoria CEO Paul McDonald said that single parents need more support so they don't turn to inappropriate or unsafe housing for their family.
"Just over 16 per cent of properties were affordable and appropriate for single parent families on minimum wage in Ballarat while in Latrobe the proportion of homes affordable to the same group was around 38 per cent.
However, those surviving on income support are still out in the cold – even in regional areas. No properties in either Ballarat or Latrobe were affordable to those on Newstart prompting Paul McDonald to join the chorus calling for a lift in the rate above the current $35 a day.
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