Rent affordability in COVID-19: Anglicare report
Leo Patterson Ross
Today Anglicare released the latest version of its Affordability Snapshot which looks at the number of available and affordable properties for people on low incomes.
Renters are on the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic. Many are losing their incomes, and some are scared of being forced out of their homes.
Our Rental Affordability Snapshot shows that welfare increases have given many Australians badly needed relief – but that the private rental market is still failing people on the lowest incomes.
On our Snapshot weekend of 21 March 2020, there were 69,960 properties listed for rent across Australia. The results show that there was a chronic shortage of affordable rentals across Australia.
It is often not until we live through a crisis that we recognise what is not working. When economic disaster strikes one of the first things people notice is the lack of genuinely affordable homes, and the precarious positions people find themselves in as a result.
Each year, Anglicare's Affordability Snapshot provides a reality check for those fortunate enough not to have experienced renting on low incomes. This year's results show that efforts to ensure everyone in our society have enough to live on are effective and achievable. We now need to ensure that no home is left behind.
Surviving and recovering from these crises gives us the opportunity to rethink how we house Australia. We can recognise housing as a fundamental need and its provision as an essential service alongside water, food, energy and health. We can ensure that people who rent are safely, and affordably housed in stable healthy homes.
In positive news, the report shows that the increased level of support for people without work does make a significant difference to the number of properties available. There is still work to do - not everyone who needs support is getting it, and the current levels of support need to remain in place in order to make a difference over time.
Check out the reports for NSW regions here:
NSW – Hunter Region, Newcastle and Central Coast
NSW – North Coast
NSW – Northern Inland
NSW – Riverina
NSW – Southeast
NSW – Sydney and the Illawarra
NSW – West
For the latest info see our Renters' Guide to COVID-19.