A new report on the rental market has highlighted the intensity of competition for low-income stock, Shelter Tas says.
Anglicare Australia’s most recent rental snapshot showed just i per cent of properties listed in August were considered affordable for single people on JobSeeker payments.
As for a family of two adults on JobKeeper with two children, 5 per cent of 76,962 properties analysed were considered affordable.
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Shelter Tas chief executive Pattie Chugg said the report showed rents had become even less affordable than they were in March as more people on low incomes competed for cheaper housing.
“The coronavirus supplement payment ends later this month, reducing a jobseeker’s income by $150 a week,” she said.
“At that lower level of income, rental affordability will sink to 0.2 percent.
“Rent deferrals and eviction moratoriums are also due to end in September in Tasmania, and many people are facing cuts to JobSeeker at the same time.”
Labor’s housing spokeswoman Alison Standen said the rent eviction moratorium needed to be extended in light of the findings from Anglicare’s report.
“At the end of September, we don’t want people facing the prospect of homelessness,” she said.
Ms Standen said the government needed to act now to end uncertainty for both renters and landlords.
Government minister Michael Ferguson said the government would soon make an announcement on future support for the state’s renters.
“We’d always want to support people who need housing, who need income support,” he said.
Ms Chugg said the new data for Anglicare reinforced the need for more affordable social housing where rent was linked to incomes.
“Shelter Tas calls for 10 per cent of Tasmanian dwellings to be affordable social housing,” she said.
“We know that the number one cause of homelessness in Tasmania is the lack of affordable housing.
“This was true before the pandemic and this report shows it is even more critical now.”
According to the most recently released figures on rentals by the Real Estate Institute of Tasmania, the median rental asking price in Launceston had gone down by 5.7 per cent.
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