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Urgent action needed to stop renters retiring into poverty

May 2, 2018, 14:13 PM by Maiy Azize

Anglicare Australia has called for urgent action to stop renters from retiring into poverty, following the release of the Rental Affordability Snapshot this week.

“Security and affordability is important for all renters – but particularly for older people who hope to enjoy a comfortable retirement,” Executive Director Kasy Chambers said.

“Our Snapshot found that just over one percent of properties were affordable for a single person on the Age Pension. That means that a huge number of retired renters are likely to be experiencing housing stress.

“For the next generation of renters, this situation will only get worse. People on low incomes are spending so much on rent that they simply cannot save for their future. That will only hurt them in retirement," Ms Chambers said.

Ms Chambers noted that many of the other issues facing renters become more acute after retirement.

“Secure, affordable housing is very important for older people when they start to need care and support at home. Recent work from the National Aged Care Alliance shows how important a home is for people hoping to age well.

“That underlines the need more security and stronger rights for renters. For example, older people might need to modify their rental to meet their needs as they age, or to receive a home care package. And it is particularly important that they are protected from having to move over and over again.

“We need to take action on rental affordability and renter's rights now – not only to help older people who are in housing stress today, but to stop future generations from retiring into poverty and insecurity.”