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Download the Australian’s for Affordable Housing analysis of Australia’s Broken Housing System

Home purchase

The majority of Australians aspire to own their own home – but it’s getting harder

  • In the last ten years house prices increased by 147 per cent, while incomes in comparison grew by 57 per cent. [1]
  • The rate of home purchase among 25 to 44 year olds has declined 15 per cent in the last 20 years. [2]
  • In 1991 the median house price was five times the average income.  In 2011 it is seven times the average income. [3]
  • The average first home loan has gone from three times the average annual income in 1996 to six times the average annual income in 2010. [4]
  • One in four Australians aged between 24 and 35 now live with their parents. [5] This has been increasing over the last 20 years.
  • Every year the Federal Government gives out $8 billion in tax breaks [6] to property investors but we still have high rents and low vacancy rates.

Rents

More people are now renting for longer, but rents are high and there is little security as rents can be increased every year and tenants can be evicted at any time – for no reason at all.

  • In the last five years capital city rents have risen at twice the rate of inflation. [7]
  • Australia has a shortage of 493,000 rental properties that are affordable and available to people on a low income. [8]
  • Over 150,000 people in private rental are paying more that 50 per cent of their income on housing costs, even after receiving rent assistance. [9]

Public housing

Public housing provides secure, stable and affordable housing for over 300,000 Australians. It helps reduce pressure on the low cost end of the rental market and makes sure that people who may never be able to buy their own home have safe, secure and appropriate housing.

  • There are 173,000 Australians on public housing waiting lists. [10]
  • Between 1996 to 2007 the number of affordable public housing properties shrank by 32,000 while the population grew by 2.8 million people.
  • Australia has just 5 per cent of all housing as public and community housing. Similar countries, like the UK, have approximately 20 per cent of their housing stock as public and community housing. [11]

Homelessness

Homelessness has many faces, women, young people, older people, families and singles. Homelessness can happen for a number of reasons, but the simple fact is that the problem can’t be solved without an affordable home.

  • On any given night over 105,000 people in Australia are homeless. [12]
  • 16,000 children are homeless in Australia. [13]
  • 58 per cent of people seeking accommodation in 2009-10 were turned away because services were unable to meet demand. [14]


Sources:
[1] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[2] Flood J and Baker E, (2010), Australia’s changing patterns of home ownership, Issue 133 December, Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute and Australian Bureau of Statistics (2009) Home and Away: the living arrangements of young people. Cat. no. 4120.0 4 1 0 , June, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra
[3] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[4] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[5] Yates J (2007), Affordability and access to home ownership: past, present and future?, Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute, Sydney
[6] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[7] National Housing Supply Council, State of Supply Report, Commonwealth of Australia, 2010
[8] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011), Consumer Price Index, Cat. no. 6401.0, June, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra
[9] Chamberlain C & MacKenzie D (2009), Counting the homeless 2006 complete set, Cat. no. HOU 213. Canberra: AIHW
[10] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[11] Flood J and Baker E, (2010), Australia’s changing patterns of home ownership, Issue 133 December, Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute
[12] Phillips, B. (2011), The Great Australian Dream – Just a Dream? AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, Issue 29, July, AMP Sydney
[13] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011b) Housing Finance, Australia, Table 9b, CAT no. 5609.0, May Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra and Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011c)Australian Economic Indicators, Table 7.4,CAT. No 1350.0, August, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra.
[14] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2009) op cit
[15] Senate Select Committee on Housing Affordability in Australia (2008), A good house is hard to find: Housing affordability in Australia, Parliament of Australia, Canberra.
[16] Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011), Consumer Price Index, Cat. no. 6401.0, June, Commonwealth of Australia
[17] National Housing Supply Council, State of Supply Report, Commonwealth of Australia, 2010
[18] Productivity Commission (2011), Report on Government Services 2011, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra.

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