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Anglicare Australia: Our housing system is failing millions of Australians

Anglicare continues to reveal the lack of rental affordability for low income families living in Bega, Bateman’s Bay and region. Their annual report continues to reveal a long-term lack of affordable private rental properties in the Eurobodalla region. with few, if any properties available for anyone relying on government support. Only 1.2 per cent of rental properties are affordable for single Australians earning minimum wage, according to new analysis which found just three affordable properties available for Australia's 1.17 million JobSeeker recipients.

Anglicare's service continue to see an alarming growth of homeless or at risk of homelessness with a greater number of older people and the expanding range of those affected as diverse as single parents, people with disabilities, and families experiencing mortgage strain because of a change in life circumstances.”

Anglicare have previously stated that supports are needed to assist the growing number of struggling families including greater government financial help for families and improved protections for renters.

Anglicare Australia say "Rents keep going up. And we don’t have enough secure, affordable rentals." This year’s Anglicare Australia Rental Affordability Snapshot indicates that immediate action is required to stop more and more people from falling into rental stress and hardship.

The Anglicare Australia Snapshot is carried out every year, to test if it is possible for people on low incomes to rent a home in the private market. They do this by taking a snapshot of the thousands of properties listed for rent on realestate.com.au. They then test whether each property is affordable for Australians on the lowest incomes. This year’s Anglicare Australia Rental Affordability Snapshot surveyed over 74,000 rental listings across Australia on 1 August 2020. They 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.


Since 1 August 2020 rentals have soared. Anglicare Australia say in their last Snapshot that in spite of welfare increases, the results of this Snapshot update make it clear that the private rental market is still failing people on the lowest incomes. "If cuts to payments are phased-in – and if those who are most vulnerable are left out – people will be pushed even deeper into poverty and homelessness. The payment increases for people out of work must become permanent. They must be extended to people with disabilities, age pensioners, and everybody who needs them. This will help people keep a roof over the heads and buy essential supplies – and in a time of hardship, it will stop people from having to make unfair choices. "The shortfall of affordable homes across Australia is massive. The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute has shown we that we need 433,400 social and affordable rentals just to make up for that shortfall. To get ahead of that shortfall for the future, the Everybody’s Home campaign is calling for 500,000 social and affordable rentals. "Ending our social housing shortfall would be the most powerful way to tackle the rental crisis and boost regional economies. With the economy reeling from the recent bushfires and people struggling to pay rent in the wake of the pandemic, we need to invest in projects that are shovel ready. There is no time to waste. Social housing projects can get off the ground much more quickly than road or rail infrastructure. They also brings longer-term benefits. For every dollar invested, social housing boosts GDP by up to $1.30." "The decisions of government to walk away from social and public housing, to freeze income support payments, and to leave renters to the mercy of the private market have been hurting people on low incomes for years. In the midst of a pandemic, and a historic recession, Australians are feeling the impact of these decisions more deeply than ever before. Renters have found themselves on the frontlines of the economic collapse wrought by the Coronavirus. They are much more likely to be in low-paid or insecure work, and many of now face an impossible situation: Not only losing income, but at risk of losing their homes."


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