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J. Fiedler and D. Faulkner
This research has found that there are many older renters struggling to the extent that they are doing without the daily essentials of life such as food, heating, medications and aged care services to ensure they keep a roof over their head. They are a hidden group that are putting up with enormous hardship while constantly under the stress of being, as an older person interviewed stated, ‘one rent increase from disaster’. Older women who have experienced gender disadvantage due to discrimination and lower levels of savings are particularly impacted.
Some of the key points from the report are:
There has been a 16% increase in homelessness in WA for those aged 65-74 between the 2011-2016 census, the biggest jump in homelessness of any age group
Over 12,000 people aged 65 and over are in housing stress paying more than 30% of their income in rent in housing that is insecure, unaffordable and not adaptable as they age.
This represents a 46.8% increase between 2011-2016
61% of those affected are women
4,395 or 36% or are in extreme housing stress paying more than 50% of their income in rent
35% of those in extreme housing stress are aged 75 or over
This Project is also undertaking similar research in Queensland and will produce a report specific to Qld when the work is finalised.