Low-income renters priced out of market


Low-income Australians are priced out of the rental market, with housing affordability worse than pre-pandemic levels in some areas, an analysis has found. Source: The Guardian.

The annual Rental Affordability Index (RAI) for 2021, released yesterday, revealed Hobart is the now the least affordable city for renters. While household incomes in Tasmania are significantly lower than the national average, rents are only marginally lower than on the mainland and the gap has been widening over the past four years.

Rapid rises since 2020 have in the last financial year made the Tasmanian capital the most unaffordable it has ever been.

For a single person on a jobseeker payment, all metropolitan and regional areas are severely or extremely unaffordable, the report found.

The RAI examines national rental bond data against the average incomes of different types of renting households. Rental stress is defined as housing costs exceeding 30 per cent of a household’s gross income, with 38-60 per cent representing severe unaffordability and 60 per cent or more indicating extreme unaffordability.

A single person solely reliant on JobSeeker payments and rental assistance would require an income nearly triple the current level of about $19,802 per annum to move into the “acceptable” affordability category, in which only 20 per cent-25 per cent of household income went on rent.

The situation is similar for single-pensioner households seeking to rent a one-bedroom dwelling, with moderate to extreme unaffordability throughout the country, including in regional areas.

The RAI report was produced by advocacy organisation National Shelter with SGS Economics and Planning, the Brotherhood of St Laurence and Beyond Bank Australia.


Rental stress on the rise as low-income Australians priced out of market (By Stephanie Convery, The Guardian)


Rental affordability dropped in most cities during 2021, according to new report (ABC News)

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