Latest News

Age and disability pensioners struggle to pay the rent

Sep 3, 2020, 09:07 AM by Maiy Azize

Anglicare Australia says the rental market is failing people on the age and disability support pensions. This follows the release of Anglicare Australia’s Rental Affordability Update.

The Update surveyed 77,000 listings and found that:
- Just 0.8% of rentals are affordable for a single person on the Age Pension. This is down from 1.1% in March.
- A couple on the Age Pension can afford 1.7% of listings. This is down from 3.2% in March.
- Disability Support Pensioners are at the bottom of the market, with just 0.3% of rentals affordable. This is down from 0.5% in March.
- Affordability all households on the disability and age pensions is down since March, and has been trending down for years.

Anglicare Australia is calling for more social housing to protect older people and people with disability from rental stress.

“Older people and people with disability are at greater risk during this pandemic. But instead of getting more support, they’ve been left behind,” said Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers.

“Our Rental Affordability Update shows that an age pensioner can afford 0.8% of rental listings across Australia. That’s even fewer than our last snapshot in March.

“Disability Support Pensioners face an even tougher situation. They can afford just 0.3%.

“Both have been left out of the Government’s payment increases, and now, both are at the bottom of the market.

“We know why this is happening, and we know how to fix it. In the past thirty years, Australia’s social housing shortfall has gotten worse and worse. We now have a shortfall of over 400,000 social homes. Over the same period, affordability for people on government payments has plummeted.

“We can’t expect the private market to provide for people who are the most vulnerable. And we can’t outsource specialist housing to mum and dad landlords.

“The Federal Government must step in and fund more social housing for people who need it the most. It must also include older people and people with disability in any of its support packages in the next budget.

“Without action, people on these pensions will simply be left to the mercy of the market.”