Interest rate rise bad news for renters in NSW and will push more families into housing stress or homelessness

Media release

6 December 2022

The interest rate rise announced by the Reserve Bank today will put even more pressure on renters across NSW, said the Community Housing Industry Association NSW (CHIA NSW).

The RBA announced it will increase rates by a quarter of a percentage point, taking the cash rate to a decade high of 3.1 per cent.

“Today’s record announcement on interest rates is bad news for families renting in NSW, who are already doing it tough,” said Mark Degotardi, CEO of CHIA NSW and spokesperson for the Confront the Crisis campaign.

CHIA NSW said that interest rate increases combined with low vacancy rates are pushing more people into rental stress and even homelessness.

“Soaring interest rates have a butterfly effect, as many landlords pass on the increases to renters. And with record-low vacancy rates, many families have no choice but to pay the higher rent and live in housing stress, or face homelessness,” said Mr Degotardi.

The rate rise comes hours after NSW Labor announced that if it were elected in the 2023 State Election, it would introduce a target of 30% social and affordable housing on surplus public land, an announcement CHIA NSW welcomed.

“Setting bold targets in our state’s planning system is crucial to boosting social and affordable housing stock, but it’s imperative NSW Labor engage with the community housing sector early so this initiative has its desired impact,” said Mr Degotardi.

CHIA NSW has launched a campaign, Confront the Crisis, calling on political parties to confront the housing crisis and commit to cutting the social housing waitlist.

“NSW is in the midst of an escalating crisis and it’s time the State Government treated it with the urgency it deserves, by investing in social and affordable housing delivered by not-for-profit community housing providers,” said Mr Degotardi.

“There are 50,000 families and individuals on the waiting list for social housing in NSW alone, and many are waiting more than 10 years. This latest interest rate rise will drive demand even higher,” said Mr Degotardi.

“It’s time for the State Government to confront this crisis, and invest in the social and affordable housing NSW desperately needs,” Mr Degotardi said.

Media Contact: Tanya Evans 0424 156 146