Like all state governments, the South Australian government provides concessions for people living on very low incomes and struggling with affordability of essential services. This review of the concessions system in South Australia highlights how the complex patchwork created poverty premiums and barriers to accessing...
This report provides an analysis of 20,405 No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) applicants with Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand, concerning their rates of insurance and average expenditure for policies.
This study investigated the impacts commuting costs have on accessing employment for low income workers who are renting their home.
In 2017, the Bureau of Communications and Arts Research found that the affordability of communications services in Australia had improved overall. In general, consumers were getting better value as prices stayed the same or fell, while product inclusions (such as data) increased. This paper updates...
This small, but in-depth study, followed the installation of solar PV in low-income households living in community rental housing in Melbourne's western suburbs. The research makes a valuable contribution to informing the development of effective mechanisms for delivery of affordable energy and alleviating energy poverty.
This paper considers interest rate caps, what is known about their use and impact in other jurisdictions, and how might they contribute to a fairer consumer credit regime in New Zealand.
100 Families WA is a collaborative research project aimed at understanding the lived experience of poverty, entrenched disadvantage and social exclusion. The first bulletin focuses on the health, economic and social impacts of hardship experienced by families in Perth, Western Australia.
This paper presents preliminary findings of a recent research project on the barriers that lower-income households in four Australian cities – Sydney, Adelaide, Hobart, and Darwin – face in reducing their carbon consumption, and the impact of programs implemented by federal and state governments and...
Credit and hardship: report of the Senate inquiry into credit and financial products targeted at Australians at risk of financial hardship
The intractable maths of low income earners' family budgets pushes them towards the marginal credit products such as payday loans, consumer leases and debt management firms. This report argues that government can and should improve the terms under which these products are offered.
Australia leads the world with rapid small-scale adoption of solar photovoltaic (PV) encouraged by feed-in-tariffs (FiTs) and rebates. The common business model for small-scale solar PV is designed around individual installation ownership requiring an upfront capital cost from the dwelling owner and rooftop capacity. These...
‘Forced Car Ownership’ (FCO) describes low income households with high car ownership, resulting in a high proportion of their income going to their cars. The cost of running multiple cars, combined with housing costs, puts considerable stress on low income households. Contemporary research has identified...
This report models a number of policy solutions that would reduce the amount people on low incomes spend on energy, in order to reduce their energy stress and support a faster transition to clean energy.
Best practices in developing energy efficiency programs for low-income communities and considerations for clean power plan compliance
This is the third in a series of papers intended to guide states as they embark on the path to Clean Power Plan (CPP) compliance. As one of many approaches to reducing pollution and complying with the CPP, states and localities can offer energy efficiency...
Low-income energy efficiency programs are an important component of ratepayer-funded efficiency portfolios throughout the country, but there is room for improvement and expansion. In this report the authors address the challenges and opportunities of low-income programs that target single-family homes. This report includes a survey...
This report on electricity, gas and water disconnections has found disconnecting people from utilities because they can’t afford to pay their bills hurts families that are already struggling, worsens the hardship experienced by people who are already living with multiple forms of disadvantage, and is...
This analysis investigated the burden of electricity and gas costs for a range of household types in Australia between 2008 and 2018, finding that some of the lowest income households in Australia spend more than 10% of their incomes on spiralling energy costs.
A demonstration of how the Healthy Heart visual food guide can be affordably used by low-income families in New Zealand
Background: The New Zealand National Heart Foundation developed the Healthy Heart visual food guide to aid New Zealanders in selecting a healthy diet. The visual food guide conveys a balance and proportion of foods, based on the recommended volume of each food group. The main...
In the context of energy reforms to address peak electricity demand in Australia, this briefing paper provides a critical review of cost-reflective electricity pricing policy and the potential impacts of heatwaves and other extreme heat events in vulnerable households.
In this report, NCOSS spoke to people and families doing it tough across NSW, hearing from people living below the poverty line on their experience and what would make a real difference for them.
Despite mobile and digital telecommunications being increasingly seen as essential, some Australians are missing out on participating fully in this new digital age. This report is concerned primarily with examining the affordability barriers for low income Australians.