Affordable housing – news and analysis

New report finds investment in social housing is critical to Australia’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery  

Three initiatives are critical to Australia’s post COVID-19 economic recovery, a new report finds: build additional social and affordable housing stock across NSW; repair old social housing stock; and rapidly acquire properties in the private market to find a permanent solution for rough sleepers and others in temporary/crisis accommodation.
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Advocating for independent living

Mary and Amanda
Mary Flowers and Amanda Elgazzar – Northern Rivers Tenant Advocates.
Recently, the Northern Rivers Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service was able to assist a tenant to maintain her independent living. The tenant lives in social housing, in a modest three bedroom home where she has lived all her life, in a country town. She has a severe visual impairment, and until recently was cared for by her mother. Sadly, her mother passed away not long ago. Her mother held the tenancy, so when she died, our client was given a six month fixed term agreement, while her eligibility for social housing was assessed.
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Renting research revisited - Part 2

A row of houses with "to let" signs out the front
Tenant advocates have lead the research into tenancy in NSW for many years. In this second of a series, Robert Mowbray looks back on two of his contributions and what we can learn from them today.
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Reflections of a Blue Mountains Tenant Advocate

Jo Hibbert
Jo Hibbert, Tenant Advocate
Jo Hibbert has been a Tenant Advocate at the Blue Mountains Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Service for seven years. Now she’s retiring for a well-earned break, so we took the opportunity to ask her for some reflections about her time in the world of tenancy. She talks about some of her experiences at the Tribunal, and the way the workload for Advocates has increased, but the funding hasn't. She also tells the story of a tenant who she defended from eviction six times!
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Big numbers and good intentions: Labor's Affordable Housing Plan

ALP announcement
The Federal ALP conference is happening in Adelaide at the moment, and one of the big early announcements was a plan to build a lot of 'affordable' housing. This can probably be treated as the first big housing announcement of the coming election campaign. It has been met with near-rapturous support from community housing providers and their supporters, like the Everybody's Home campaign. Others, like ACOSS have been more circumspect. And some on twitter have raised some concerns. Let's dig in to what the policy is, and what we might expect to deliver.
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Meet Rita – Tenants' Advice Service Coordinator

Rita Wilkinson
Rita Wilkinson, Tenants' Service Coordinator
Rita Wilkinson is the Tenancy and Financial Inclusion Manager at Metro Assist, and the Coordinator of the Southern Sydney Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service. This interview was originally published by Metro Assist as part of their spotlight on dedicated, long-serving staff, who have been with the service for between 10 and 20 years. We'd also like to extend our congratulations and thank Rita for all the great work she does!
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The sale of Millers Point properties has ended: it has made inequality worse

Millers Point - not for sale photo
With the sale of the final two terrace houses on Saturday, 3 November 2018, Property NSW announced the end of the Millers Point sales program. Announcement of the successful tender for the sale of the Sirius building is expected any day now. We'll take this moment to reflect on a number of ways to remember this chapter.
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A longer lease on life: issues for older renters

Older people faces
With a surplus of $3.9 billion for 2016-17, the 2018 NSW State Budget had its winners and losers. The latter include seniors and renters. This blog examine some of the issues confronting older renters.
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More than bricks and mortar

Robin and Kathy
Robyn Stafford and Kathy Calvert at the launch of Remembering Minto
Robyn Stafford lives in Minto, a suburb in south western Sydney. She has experience as a tenant who has been through a redevelopment process in public housing. She has been active in working alongside other community members to improve tenant outcomes from the redevelopment process. She shares her wisdom in this interview.
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Women finding home

Hana
Hana: "Be brave and strong."
Women from a refugee background face a multitude of challenges and barriers when trying to find a place to call home in Australia. Like many Australians faced with a sudden change in living circumstances, they don’t have a rental history, referees or money for a bond or advance rent. In this article Rekha Sanghi of Settlement Services International looks at some of these issues and shares the stories of two women from refugee backgrounds, Hana and Zara.
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