Rental Affordability Snapshot 2019: Affordable WA rental shortage ‘dire’

Apr 29, 2019

Anglicare WA called for an immediate boost in State and Federal government investment in affordable housing, with today’s release of the Rental Affordability Snapshot 2019 revealing no affordable properties anywhere in the State for individuals living on Newstart payments.

The Snapshot is an annual study of the cost of rental properties on the same day across Australia in collaboration with Anglicare organisations nationally.

This year’s snapshot revealed of the 9,283 private rentals listed on 23 March 2019 in the Perth, South West, Great Southern and North-West regions that affordable accommodation remains out of reach for most people relying on government payments and pensions*.

Anglicare WA CEO Mark Glasson said WA needs a net increase of at least 15,000 new social housing dwellings by 2030 to address the current shortfall.

“This is the fifth consecutive annual report to show NO affordable rental properties in Perth for single people on Newstart,” said Mr Glasson.

“Balance needs to be returned to our housing system so all Western Australians, regardless of circumstance, can afford a place to live and to plan for the future,” explained Mr Glasson.

“Every day, we work with people struggling to make ends meet and its clear WA desperately needs an integrated approach to increasing social and affordable housing, improved security for renters, increased income support and a commitment to end homelessness.

WA highlights from the Rental Affordability Snapshot 2019:

  • Newstart Allowance: 0 rentals were affordable for a single person; 2 rentals for a single parent; 142 for a couple with two children
  • Parenting Payment: 51 rentals were affordable for a single parent with one child, 34 rentals with two children
  • Aged Pension: 74 rentals were affordable for a single person; 433 for a couple
  • Disability Support Pension: 20 rentals were affordable for a single person
  • Youth Allowance: 0 rentals for a single person living on their own or in a share house
  • Minimum Wage: 194 rentals for a single person, 931 for a single parent also receiving Family Tax Benefit (FTB) A & B; and, more than 4,000 for a couple with two children also receiving FTB or Parenting Payment.

Mr Glasson said having a place to call home is a human right, yet it’s denied to our most disadvantaged Australians.

“The best form of welfare isn’t a job; it’s a roof over your head.

“From our experience, securing affordable accommodation is often the first step in getting people back on their feet and developing a sense of belonging.

“This year’s Snapshot reinforces what we already know anecdotally, that households relying on income support to survive, are either going without basic necessities such as food, or going without stable accommodation.

 “The lack of compassion shown by our leaders for our most vulnerable is incredibly concerning, especially as we’re in the midst of a Federal Election and improving economic conditions in our State,”

“Nationally, rental affordability is down across the board, The numbers are in: Australia has a rental crisis and both major parties must commit in this Federal election campaign to ending this shortfall and ensuring every Australian has a place to call home.”

[ENDS]

Notes:
* According to the Rental Affordability Snapshot a property was deemed to be affordable if it required less than 30% of a household’s income, and it was considered appropriate if it had an adequate number of bedrooms.


Media contact:
Emma-Jane Morcombe
Anglicare WA Media and PR Coordinator,
P: (08) 9263 2039 | M: 0439 272 262 | E: emmajane.morcombe@anglicarewa.org.au

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