Every year Anglicare Australia tests if it is possible for people on low incomes to rent a home in the private market. We do this by taking a snapshot of the thousands of properties listed for rent on realestate.com.au on one weekend in March or April. We then assess whether each property is affordable and suitable for 14 types of households on low income.
Those households are:
- single people receiving the Disability Support Pension, Youth Allowance, Newstart and the Aged Pension, or earning minimum wage
- single parents receiving the Parenting Payment or earning the minimum wage
- elderly couples without children on the Aged Pension, and
- couples with children on Newstart, Parenting Payment, earning the minimum wage, or a combination of these income sources.
Taking the national figures and aggregating them by income type, we find that on the Snapshot day, the number of unique properties affordable and appropriate for all households on government income support payments was 3,729 (6%), while for households on minimum wage it was 18,976 (28%). These results show that finding an affordable and suitable home to rent in the private market is extraordinarily challenging.