4130.0 - Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2017-18 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 17/07/2019   
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HOUSING AFFORDABILITY

One measure of housing affordability is a ratio of housing costs to gross household income, also known as a housing affordability ratio. The complexities in measuring different types of housing costs mean that care should be taken when comparing housing costs and affordability ratios across tenure types.

In 2017–18, this housing affordability ratio for major household tenure types was:
    • 3% for owners without a mortgage
    • 16% for owners with a mortgage
    • 23% for renters from a state or territory housing authority
    • 20% for renters from a private landlord

Graph Image for Housing costs as a proportion of gross household income, 1997-98 to 2017-18

Annotation(s): Note: Survey not run in 1998–99, 2001–02, 2004–05, 2006–07, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15 or 2016–17. Values have been interpolated for these years.

Source(s): Survey of Income and Housing



LOWER INCOME HOUSEHOLDS

Lower income households in this publication are those containing the 38% of persons between the 3rd and 40th percentiles of equivalised disposable household income.

In 2017–18, average housing costs and housing affordability ratios for lower income households by tenure type were:
    • $209 per week (22% of gross weekly income) for all lower income households, compared to $311 per week (14% of gross weekly income) for all households
    • $376 per week (29% of gross weekly income) for lower income home owner households with a mortgage
    • $339 per week (32% of gross weekly income) for lower income households renting from a private landlord

The proportion of lower income households spending more than 30% of their gross weekly income on housing costs was:
    • More than half (57%) of those renting from a private landlord (down from 60% in 2015–16)
    • Around four in ten (41%) of owners with a mortgage (unchanged from 2015–16)

For selected other lower income household groups, the percentage spending more than 30% of their gross weekly income on housing was:
    • Just under half (45%) of one parent families with dependent children
    • More than a third (35%) of couple families with dependent children
    • Over a quarter (29%) of lone person households
    • Around half of households with younger reference persons aged 15–24 (55%), 25–34 (47%) or 35–44 (48%)
    • Progressively fewer of households with older reference persons aged 45–54 (31%), 55–64 (25%), 65–74 (14%) or 75 and over (8%)

More detail about housing affordability can be found in the data cubes available to download from the 'Downloads’ tab of this product.
    • Data cube 1 contains a time series of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income for Australia from 1994–95 to 2017–18.
    • Data cube 4 features estimates of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income by selected household characteristics.
    • Data cube 5 features estimates of households and lower income households within housing costs as a proportion of income ranges by selected household characteristics.
    • Data cube 6 features estimates of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income by family and household composition.
    • Data cube 8 features estimates of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income by selected household characteristics for lower income households.
    • Data cubes 11 and 12 features estimates of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income for each Greater Capital City Statistical Area and state or territory in 2017–18.
    • Data cubes 13 through to 20 features estimates of housing costs as a proportion of gross household income for each state or territory from 1994–95 to 2017–18.

Another measure of housing affordability for lower income renter households can be found in data cube 21. That measure, informing one of the performance indicators in the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement, defines lower income households as those households containing the 40% of people at or below the 40th percentile of equivalised disposable household income (excluding RA) calculated at the total Australia households level. More information on this is available as an appendix to the 'Explanatory Notes' of this publication.