4130.0 - Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2013-14 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/10/2015   
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16 October 2015
Embargoed: 11.30 am (Canberra time)
Housing costs for owners steady while housing costs for renters increase

Housing costs for owners with a mortgage remained steady in real terms between 2011-12 and 2013-14, at $453 a week, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

An increase in average household incomes has seen owners with a mortgage spending 16 per cent of their income on housing costs in 2013-14, down from 18 per cent in 2011-12.

Caroline Daley from the ABS said the figures show the difference in the impact of housing costs on weekly household budgets for those renting and for those with a mortgage.

“With housing costs for owners with a mortgage remaining steady, and gross weekly income increasing, mortgages, on average, became more affordable in 2013-14."

“The data did show that lower income households are continuing to devote a significant portion of their income to servicing housing costs.

“Lower income households with a mortgage paid $326 a week on average, or 27 per cent of their gross weekly income on housing costs,” said Ms Daley.

Renters have seen an increase in their housing costs, from an average of $328 per week in 2011-12 to $340 in 2013-14.

Despite this rise, the housing costs to income ratio remained steady over this period, with renters spending, on average, 20 per cent of their gross household income on housing costs.

Lower income households renting from a private landlord paid on average $313 per week, which represented 34 per cent of their gross weekly income.

The majority of lower income private renters paid, on average, over 30 per cent of their gross weekly income on housing costs.

Since 1994-95, the proportion of households that own their home outright has declined from 42 per cent to 31 per cent. The proportion of households with a mortgage has increased from 30 to 36 per cent and the proportion of households renting privately has increased from 18 to 26 per cent between 1994-95 and 2013-14.

More details are available in the 2013-14 issue of Housing Occupancy and Costs, Australia (cat. no. 4130.0) available for free download from the ABS website at www.abs.gov.au.

Media note:

  • Housing costs comprise rent payments, rates payments (general and water) and mortgage or unsecured loan payments, if the initial purpose was primarily to buy, add to or alter the dwelling.
  • Historical estimates used for comparison are CPI adjusted.
  • Lower income households are those containing the 38 per cent of people with equivalised disposable household income between the 3rd and 40th percentiles.
  • Please ensure when reporting on ABS data that you attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or ABS) as the source.
  • Media requests and interviews - contact the ABS Communications Section on 1300 175 070.