• New study finds home ownership remains difficult for many Perth residents


    Home ownership remains difficult for households on low-to-moderate incomes, a new housing affordability study has found.

    The report, Housing Affordability – A study for the Perth metropolitan area, is the result of a collaboration between the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia, the Housing Authority and Shelter WA, and is focused on affordability for households on very low (less than $43,000), low ($43,000-$69,000) and moderate incomes ($69,000-$86,000).

    Key findings include:
    • There is a mismatch between the availability of housing in Perth and what households can afford.
    • Less than one per cent private market sales of houses and units were affordable to households on a very low income while only eight per cent were affordable to households on a low income.
    • Up to 43 per cent of households in Perth are considered very low or low income.
    • The Perth housing market is heavily weighted towards larger properties, with over 80 per cent of sold properties having three or more bedrooms, which highlights the lack of diversity in Perth’s housing stock.

    Housing Minister Brendon Grylls said that while the property market has softened, improving availability for some, those on the lowest incomes are still finding it extremely difficult to find available, appropriate and affordable housing.

    “With over 80 per cent of sales being larger properties, it’s also evident that there’s a lack of diversity in Perth’s housing stock,” Mr Grylls said.

    “Housing affordability is a complex issue and the information in the report will inform the Housing Authority in the delivery of its commitments under the State Affordable Housing Strategy, which is on track to provide 30,000 affordable housing opportunities by 2020.”

    Shelter WA Executive Officer Chantal Roberts noted the research identifies the limited housing options for low to moderate income households in WA.

    “There are many households, including key workers, that are trapped in our insecure private rental market due to a lack of diverse and affordable options, particularly in locations close to jobs and services,” Chantal Roberts said.

    “A range of varied and affordable housing is needed across all areas to support the development of strong and diverse communities.”

    REIWA President Hayden Groves added that the report highlights key issues affecting the industry and the community as a whole.

    “We can see from the findings that both housing affordability and diversity are issues to be addressed and we’re looking forward to working with both the Housing Authority and Shelter WA on further research regarding the state of the WA housing market,” Mr Groves said.

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