Housing supply

Rental Affordability Index Nov 2017 - Key Findings

National Renters Survey with CHOICE and NATO

Aussie renters facing insecurity and poor quality housing, with 50% reporting discrimination

Report EMBARGOED until Thursday 16 February 2017 

National Shelter has partnered with CHOICE and the National Association of Tenants’ Organisations to call for governments to prioritise rental security and quality issues, alongside housing affordability, as a national study reveals widespread fear and discrimination faced by thousands of Australians.

“Governments across Australia are rightly focused on the issue of housing affordability. Affordability is extremely important to renters, but it can’t be addressed without also looking at the quality and security of housing.” said Adrian Pisarski, National Shelter’s Executive Officer.

“It’s hard to imagine a product or service this poor in any other sector. As consumers of rental properties, tenants have to deal with major quality issues like mould or flooding and are systematically denied access to a timely remedy,” said Alan Kirkland, CHOICE CEO .

“Worringly, we found that renters with more experience in the market were less likely to complain when something goes wrong which illustrates the entrenched culture of fear among renters. This is all the more of a concern when you consider the rising number of long-term renters across Autralia,” said Ned Cutcher, National Association of Tenants’ Organisations spokesperson.

Key findings 

  • 83% of renters in Australia have no fixed-term lease or are on a lease less than 12 months long
  • 62% of people say they feel like they can’t ask for changes
  • 50% of renters report experiencing discrimination when applying for a rental property
  • 50% of renters worried about being listed on a residential tenancy database
  • 20% renters experiencing leaking, flooding and issues with mould
  • 8% of renters are living in a property in need of urgent repairs

Negative gearing will not help “ordinary” Australians


The Property Council of Australia (PCA) and the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) recently commissioned a report “Australian Housing Investment: Analysis of negative gearing and CGT discount for residential property”.  A PCA article cites the report to argue that negative gearing and capital gains tax discounts (CGT) for property investors are good for the country, countering recent criticism of these measures contributing to house price inflation.  PCA also advocates for the same measure as the correct approach to investment and savings tax treatments and points to a number of “myths” about negative gearing and CGT.  In this article, National Shelter challenges the PCA statements, encouraging readers to look at the bigger picture.

Recent public criticisms of negative gearing and CGT include claims that both measures are:


  • Too generous for high income earners;
  • Contributing to house price inflation by fueling demand without a commensurate supply strategy;
  • Not the most productive application of housing investment; and
  • Not adding to new builds because most investors purchase existing rather than new housing.

Financial impact of asset transfers from state/territory governments to community housing organisations

This report was written for National Shelter by Sphere consulting.  It explores the appetite and issues relating to stock transfer iaround the country.  It also provides a model showing the minimum level of asset transfer neded to optimise the leverage ofrom such transfers.

National Affordable Housing Agreement project report

This report is the result of a series of consultations held by National Shelter around the country on the strengths and weaknesses of the National Affordable Housing Agreement (NAHA).  It contains a series of recommendations to strengthen the agreement.

Budget 2014 media release

National Shelter condemns the abandonment of affordable housing in the 2014 Federal Budget