Tenants unable to pay the rent should get two jobs or move to Adelaide or Perth, Real Estate Institute says

Tenants unable to pay the rent should get two jobs or move to Adelaide or Perth, Real Estate Institute says

Tenants unable to pay the rent should get two jobs or move to Adelaide or Perth, Real Estate Institute says


The nation’s top real estate agent has some advice for anyone trying to get on top of property prices.

“Do the hard yards. Maybe even, God forbid, get two jobs,” Real Estate Institute of Australia (REI) president, Malcolm Gunning, told 7.30.

“Now, your viewers will hate that, OK, but many, many people do it — a lot of our migrants work two jobs.”

That is especially the case for middle to high-income earners who have been locked out of the housing market in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

It is a squeeze at the top and bottom of the market.

Tenants associations and community housing groups say the burden to pay higher rents has fallen on low-income earners, who are also being hit by a significant drop off in public housing.

But the REI says there is no national rental affordability crisis at the moment — it just depends where you want to live.

“I don’t accept there’s a rental affordability crisis, not in Australia, because most of the stats are focussed on Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne,” Mr Gunning said.

“The reason the rents haven’t dropped, particularly in Melbourne and Sydney, is because of population growth.

“If you want to live on the fringe of the city, it’s affordable, if you want to live closer to the city, it’s expensive.

“What we need to do is create jobs in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, and I’m sure many of your viewers, if they can earn the same money, they’d bolt.”

What your money gets you now

In Sydney, five kilometres from the CBD, $470 a week gets you three walls and a balcony on the eighth floor of an apartment block with no car park.

“[A studio] is not for everyone, but if you want that convenience that’s the way you live your life,” Mr Gunning said.

Sixty kilometres away in Penrith, on Sydney’s western fringe, Wendy Gammon and her family are looking at renting something for $400 a week.

They are about to be evicted from their current home, which is going to be demolished to make way for new units.

“I’m now 53, and to live in a unit for the first time at my age would probably be a bit of a shock to the system,” she told 7.30.

Her husband is a truck driver and she works in a call centre with varying hours, which means rent money is tight.

“My job is much more volatile, so it’s always a stress for me with shifts,” she said.

Her son Brad is moving back in with his mum to help pay the rent.

“Me and my girlfriend moved out on our own for six months,” he said.

“It was $300 a week, which is affordable, but I mean a little one bedroom.

“We had hot water for a 30 second shower each, it was a nightmare.”

Who is hurting most — renters or home buyers?

The National Association of Tenant Organisations (NATO) is in no doubt.

“We really are in a bit of a crisis, and it’s a crisis that’s been brewing for a long time,” NATO spokesperson Leo Patterson Ross told 7.30.

“I think the first thing we need to do is accept that rented homes are homes and they’re not simply investment vehicles.

“I think it’s the uncertainty that gives people a lot of fear. We really don’t know what we’re going to be paying in a year, in two years, 10 [years].”

But the nation’s biggest real estate data company, CoreLogic, disagrees.

“Relative to buying a house, renting is relatively affordable across Australia,” CoreLogic head of research, Tim Lawless, said.

“26 to 28 per cent of household income is dedicated to a landlord.

“If you’re paying down a mortgage like [in] Sydney, households are paying 48 to 50 per cent of their gross annual income paying down a mortgage.”

But he accepts low-income earners are suffering.

“This segment of the marketplace that’s absolutely under the most rental stress — we’ve seen wages growth overall tracking very slow, less than inflation — but we’re finding in those lower income brackets, lower quartile, we’re finding income growth is even lower,” he said.

Low income rental stress

It is those people at the bottom who worry Ellen Witte, a specialist in economic geography at SGS.

“45 per cent of the low-income households are now in rental stress,” she said.

“That’s, of course, a dire situation which means that people are paying 30 per cent of their income or more on rent.

“That leaves very little left for food, heating and cooling of the house, transport and education for the children.”

She said governments were not investing enough in public housing, forcing those at the bottom out onto the street.

“About a third of all homeless households actually give the main reason to housing unaffordability, so that’s a key driver,” she said.

This content was originally published here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • Try your lucky to get discount coupon
  • 1 spin per email
  • No cheating
Try Your Lucky
Remind later
No thanks