Anglicare Australia is calling on the Government to tackle housing affordability in its next Budget. The call is made as Anglicare Australia releases its annual Rental Affordability Snapshot.
The Snapshot surveyed over 74,000 rental listings across Australia and found that:
- 386 rentals were affordable for a single person on the Age Pension
- 236 rentals were affordable for a person on the Disability Support Pension
- 3 rentals, all sharehouses, were affordable for a person on JobSeeker
- 0 rentals were affordable for a person on Youth Allowance.
Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers said that the rental crisis is getting worse:
“If you open any newspaper, you will read that our economy is bouncing back. But this Snapshot shows that many Australians are being left behind,” Ms Chambers said.
“The ‘new’ rate of JobSeeker is so low that it hasn’t made a dent in affordability. There are even fewer affordable rentals now than there were on the old rate of Newstart.
“People who have kept their jobs are hardly better off. A person on the minimum wage can afford just one percent of rentals – less than half of what was available last year. The recovery is leaving too many people behind.”
Ms Chambers said that more must be done to help people on the lowest incomes.
“Each year, we think the market couldn’t get any worse. And each year, we’re shocked to see that it can. That’s why we need to lift JobSeeker and other payments above the poverty line. If we don’t, people out of work will be pushed deeper into housing stress and even homelessness.
“We also need to invest in affordable housing. Our shortfall is massive. We need 500,000 new social and affordable rentals across Australia.
“Investing in housing would be the most powerful way to tackle the rental crisis – and boost regional economies after a tough year. “We’re calling on the government to take action in the next Budget – and make sure everyone has a place to call home,” Ms Chambers said.