Nowhere to go – older women and housing vulnerability – Right Now

Anette, 67, lives alone in a western suburb of Sydney, roughly 25 minutes by car from the CBD. She rents a one-bedroom flat nearby to her two young grandchildren, whom she helps to care for. When she is not caring for her grandchildren Annette works part-time as a teacher at a school for children with special needs. In addition to her pay, she receives a partial age pension, plus Rent Assistance, from Centrelink.“The rent is going up on my place, and it’s going up out of my reach,” Annette tells me, when we meet. Her total income comes to just over $2,000 a month, but she currently pays more than half of her income in rent, and she cannot afford the increase. She would like to remain in her current flat until the end of her six-month lease, but will be looking for somewhere else to live in the meantime. On her income it will be difficult to find affordable rent in Sydney, but with her work and family commitments she is not in a position to be able to leave the city either. “I’ve come to the point where I don’t know what’s going to happen to me,” she says.Annette is not alone in the uncertainty of her accommodation. The number of older women who are rental tenants in Australia is growing, and these women, if not already poor, are increasingly vulnerable to poverty and homelessness.

Source: Nowhere to go – older women and housing vulnerability – Right Now

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