Rent assistance must be increased: Productivity Commission

Article published 24 October 2019

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THE Productivity Commission’s report Vulnerable Private Renters: Evidence and Options calls for an increase to Rent Assistance. This report also highlights the lack of public housing available.

The report finds the number of low-income households in rental stress has doubled in the past two decades. The report also finds that more than 600,000 households are in rental stress and are spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent).

Rent Assistance is currently $68.50 a week for singles paying more than $150 per week in rent.

The Productivity Commission’s report shows that in the last twenty years, the proportion of people in home ownership and public and community housing has fallen, leaving more people in the private rental market, including those on very low incomes.

Secure, affordable housing is a foundation of community participation and productivity.

Rent Assistance should be adjusted periodically in order to keep pace with market rents.

Australian Government investment in public housing should be substantially increased to deliver housing security to the vulnerable.

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