As the nation grapples with its fifth interest rate hike in as many months, new figures have shown that landlords are increasingly passing on costs to their tenants.
New housing data from advocacy group Everybody’s Home reveals renters are facing drastic rent increases, with one suburb seeing rents rise by more than $100 a week.
Over the past three months, Sydney’s suburbs have seen vacancy rates decline and rental prices soar amid a mounting cost-of-living crisis.
Renters on the lower North Shore saw their rent cost rise by a staggering $107 per week. The nearly 15 percent increase brings the median sales price of a rental in the suburb to more than $859 a week.
Sydney’s CBD was not far behind, with rentals soaring from $98 per week to a weekly total of just over $860.
The most expensive average sales rate was in the illustrious Northern Beaches, where rents rose $66 a week to a costly $934 total.
The data shows that the pattern was repeated across Sydney, with variable cost increases.
In south-west Sydney, rental prices rose by more than $46 a week as the tight rental market allowed landlords to pass on interest rate increases to their tenants who have limited options to leave.
In Sutherland Shire, the median weekly rent had increased $60 a week, or 9.9 percent.
Everybody’s Home spokeswoman Kate Colvin said it is “both unfair and unwise” for tenants to be forced to bear the cost of inflation.
“The rent crisis is shocking the community, with renters being hit by massive rent increases and having to cut back on food, gas and other essentials,” he said.
“This is a social calamity and an economic disaster, with the double whammy of historically low vacancies and skyrocketing rents making it impossible to find alternative, more affordable housing.”
Data compiled by Everybody’s Home reveals that more than half of renters in 24 Sydney suburbs are experiencing financial stress.
In Campbelltown, more than 76.5 percent of renters say they are experiencing financial difficulties with rent.
In three suburbs, more than 49 percent of renters reported financial hardship.
Damn, a rental affordability analysis by Anglicare revealed that a single person on Jobseeker could only afford five of the 45,000 rental properties available for rent in March 2022.
Ms. Colvin said housing organizations welcomed the federal government’s commitment of $575 million for affordable and social housing last week, but cautioned that further action is needed.
“With rents rising by about $50 a week in just three months, we know a much bigger effort is needed,” he said.
While a count by the City of Sydney showed the number of people sleeping rough has fallen, Ms Colvin said the rental market is forcing people to make very difficult decisions.
“Australia is one of the richest countries in the world. However, we do have women returning to violent homes or facing homelessness due to our distorted housing market,” she said.
“Families with full-time breadwinners live in tents. We need to start planning more social and affordable houses now.”
The lack of investment in affordable and social housing costs the economy $676.5 million each year, according to a study from Swinburne University of Technology.