IT USED to be the great Australian dream.
To many more now, that dream will remain nothing more. Just a dream with little chance of becoming reality.
“Housing affordability” is more than a couple of buzz words thrown together, for many it is a grim reality.
Earlier this year Premier Gladys Berejiklian declared it "the biggest issue people have across the state".
And the Premier is bang on the money.
It’s already been a key topic in the lead up to next week’s Federal budget to be handed down by Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison.
It will continue to be an issue when the NSW Government hands down its budget in June and it be an election issue as we line up to go to the ballot box next year.
Property consultant CoreLogic’s Hedonic Home Value Index April 2017 results were issued this week.
The figures reaffirm what people living in this region see and hear.
The numbers revealed the median house price for the Illawarra grew 3.4 per cent to $632,500 for the March quarter in what Alex Frino, Professor of Economics at the University of Wollongong, said was “the strongest March quarter house price growth recorded since the Global Financial Crisis hit markets a little over 10 years ago”.
That’s staggering. Great if you own property already, not so great if you don’t.
Prof Frino said offering more money and incentives for buyers was not the answer, suggesting rather the solution in part was in providing more housing.
It makes a lot of sense, as long as that housing is affordable and accessible.
Yet the problem is much bigger than simply owning you own home.
“I am as much concerned about someone on a low income, struggling with their rent as I am with someone who I know wants to get into home ownership for themselves,” Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison said earlier this year.
Last week the Illawarra Mercury revealed on the back of an Anglicare report, there was almost no or very little housing options available in the entire Illawarra for people on supported incomes.
We are also hearing one of the biggest growing issues in terms of homelessness relates to women, particularly single women, over the age of 55.
Over coming months we will continue to take a deep look into all of the issues relating to housing affordability in this region.