Wayne Swan dubs tonight’s budget a “battler’s budget”

Treasurer Wayne Swan has dubbed tonight’s budget a “battler’s budget”, but without measures to address housing costs.

Australians for Affordable Housing’s Sarah Toohey said one in 10 households in housing stress and rents are increasing at twice the rate of inflation, leaving little money to spend in other parts of the economy.

“A true ‘battler’s budget’ would be investing in more low cost rental housing and addressing the tax breaks that drive up house prices,” said Toohey.

“While the Treasurer would argue that delivering a surplus means the RBA can cut interest rates, rates are only half the story when it comes to housing affordability,” she said.

“One third of all households actually have a mortgage.”

“A third of Australian households rent their home, and won’t benefit one bit from interest rate reductions. The rental market is also where house stress is highest and one in four households struggle to make the rent.”

Research released by Anglicare Australia last week showed not one rental property in Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Darwin or Adelaide was affordable to a single person receiving Newstart, Youth Allowance or Austudy, and very few were affordable to households earning the minimum wage.

 

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