Federal Member for Newcastle Sharon Claydon has backed local calls for urgent Turnbull Government action on housing affordability.
Ms Claydon said the situation was getting increasingly dire for many Novocastrians trying to buy their first home or find a suitable rental property to live in.
“First homebuyers need to save more than $100,000 just for a deposit in Newcastle at the moment,” Ms Claydon said.
“At the same time, recent research by the Samaritans found that almost two-thirds of rental properties aren’t affordable for households on the minimum wage. And not one of the advertised properties listed in the Newcastle or Lake Macquarie region was deemed affordable for a single person on Newstart or Youth Allowance – even in shared accommodation.”
Ms Claydon accused the Government of “active negligence and betrayal of young and vulnerable Australians.”
Since 2013, the Abbott and Turnbull Governments have:
- Refused to reform negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions that are costing the Federal Budget billions and driving up house prices
- Shut down the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) that has provided 37,000 new affordable social housing units and was on track to achieve its target of 50,000. NRAS was the first and only supply side subsidy for affordable rental housing for low and very low income households
- Axed the First Home Saver Accounts Scheme which was helping people save for their first home
- Scrapped the National Housing Supply Council and the Prime Minister’s Council on Homelessness
- Cut $44 million a year from homelessness services funding.
“It’s no wonder the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute has accused the Government of deliberate neglect when it comes to housing policy.”
Ms Claydon urged the Government to support the measures in Federal Labor’s comprehensive plan to tackle housing affordability.
Labor will improve housing affordability, increase financial stability, reduce homelessless and boost jobs by:
- Reforming negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions
- Boosting homelessness support for vulnerable Australians
- Re-establishing the National Housing Supply Council
- Reinstating a Minister for Housing
- Facilitating a COAG process to introduce a uniform vacant property tax across all major cities
- Getting better results from the National Affordable Housing Agreement
- Increasing foreign investor fees and penalties
- Establishing a bond aggregator to increase investment in affordable housing
- Limiting direct borrowing by self-managed superannuation funds.
“It’s now time for the Turnbull Government to back ordinary Australians over wealthy investors and the property lobby.”