Australia Talks: Renters and home owners see the world through different eyes


The biggest difference between Australian renters and home owners is around feeling confident of being able to remain in their communities.

52% renters harbour a fear of being forced out due to expense

only 19% of owners worried about the same thing

across all respondents, 22 per cent were “spending more than I can afford on housing”

45% renters feeling financially overstretched by their weekly rent

young people are over-represented in the ranks both of renters and anxious people

-78% of renters home ownership is not a realistic option for most young Australians

WHY is this so?

BECAUSE … meanwhile black money is awash in Australian Real Estate because the Real Estate Gatekeepers have been excluded from the Anti-Money Laundering Laws (October 2018)

temporary Visa holders can gain a ‘Permanent Resident Visa’ after they buy our real estate!

SEARCH CAAN WEBSITE to find more about Visa manipulation … the large number of Visas on offer … the FIRB ruling allowing developers to sell 100% of ‘new homes’ to foreigners … the May 2017 Budget Regulation


Australia Talks: Renters and home owners see the world through different eyes

By Annabel Crabb

14 NOVEMBER 2019

The iconic family board game, Monopoly.

PHOTO: It seems Australia is a game of Monopoly: home owners are winning. (Flickr: John Morgan)

EXTERNAL LINK: Use the Australia Talks interactive tool to see how Australians really think

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As property prices bolted away in the last decade, it’s no secret that a growing proportion of Australians began to come to terms with the likelihood that they would remain renters for ever.

In the Monopoly game of life, their objective isn’t to buy Mayfair and stack it with hotels; it’s to live where their resources and community ties permit, while hoping Chance doesn’t deal them a nasty surprise.

But what the Australia Talks National Survey reveals is that the answer to the question “Do you rent or own?” is predictive of much, much more than whether the respondent feels free to put in picture hooks at whim.

In fact, renters and owners feel differently from each other across a range of issues: some obvious, and some more surprising.

The home ownership divide

The biggest difference between renters and home owners is around feeling confident of being able to remain in their communities.

*When asked whether they feared they might be forced out of their area because it was getting too expensive to live there, more than half of renters — 52 per cent — confirmed that this was a fear they harboured.

*But only 19 per cent of owners worried about the same thing.

Interestingly, this was not about income. Across all respondents, the fear of having to move for economic reasons was fairly consistent across all income groups; among the poorest Australians, living on up to $599 a week, fear of having to move was felt by 26 per cent. Among the top wage bracket — more than $3,000 a week — the fear was still palpably present, at 16 per cent.

*But it’s the home ownership divide that most strongly dictated sentiments.

Would you be happier with more money?
Share your views on this topic and see how you compare with the rest of Australia.

The second clearest difference between renters and owners is the extent to which they feel financially stretched.

*Across all respondents, 22 per cent of Australians felt that they were “spending more than I can afford on housing”.

*But among renters, the proportion feeling financially overstretched by their weekly rent stood much higher, at 45 per cent.

And, for all the bronto-mortgages generated across Australia by the housing boom, only 14 per cent of home owners reported feeling seriously over-stretched.

EMBED: Comparing the views of renters and home owners

Renting on the rise

The Australian Bureau of Statistics reports that over the 25 years to the most recent national Census, the proportion of Australians who own their own home outright has fallen, while the ranks of tenants and mortgagors have expanded.

*In the 1991 Census, 41.1 per cent of Australians owned their homes unencumbered by obligations to a financial institution; by 2016, that proportion had fallen to 31 per cent.

*Renters were only 26.9 per cent of the population in 1991, but that rose to 30.9 per cent over the subsequent quarter of a century.

*And the fastest-growing group — people who co-own their homes with the bank — swelled from 27.5 per cent to 34.5 per cent.

Back to the renter vs home owner data.

Some of the differences in responses are clearly related to the already established increased rates of financial insecurity among renters.

Across all respondents, 60 per cent said they felt they could handle a major unexpected expense.

But among renters, only 42 per cent shared this confidence to any degree, while among home owners, 67 per cent felt prepared for a financial shock.

But other differences were less explicable by circumstance of accommodation.

Renters are more anxious

The Australia Talks National Survey shows renters are more anxious than home owners. When asked about their anxiety levels, 7 per cent of tenants said they “always” felt anxious, while 30 per cent said they “frequently” felt that way.

Among home owners, however only 3 per cent always felt anxious, and 18 per cent frequently.

*An important note of context is that young people are over-represented in the ranks both of renters and anxious people; home ownership tends to increase with age, and anxiety decreases, according to the Australia Talks data.

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On a range of other factors, there are pronounced differences of opinion between the home-owning and home-renting communities.

Renters were more likely, for instance, to disapprove of the Australian media. While 54 per cent of owners agreed that the media “generally do a good job” of keeping the population informed, only 40 per cent of renters felt the same way.

Renters were more likely to support the legalisation of marijuana, and to worry about the time they spent on social media.

*While owners — perhaps because of their statistical under-representation in some of the other worry factors — had a rosier view of life in Australia; 74 per cent felt this country was the most liveable in the world, while only 60 per cent of renters felt the same way.

So, is owning a home achievable?

Most significantly, this optimism gap extended strongly to the future of the housing sector itself.

*When asked whether home ownership remains a realistic option for most young Australians, 78 per cent of renters — the vast majority — answered that it doesn’t.

Only 56 per cent of home owners shared their bleak outlook; possibly, they were thinking of the children listed in their wills.

The Australia Talks National Survey asked 54,000 Australians about their lives and what keeps them up at night. Use our interactive tool to see the results and how their answers compare with yours — available in English, simplified Chinese, Arabic and Vietnamese.

*Then, tune in at 8.30pm on November 18, as Annabel Crabb hosts a live TV event with some of Australia’s best-loved celebrities exploring the key findings of the Australia Talks National Survey.