Home ownership has fallen to a record low in Australia as the government prepares to introduce a national homes for rent scheme.
Key points:The government says a record number of Australians are now renting their home rather than buying or building itThe scheme is expected to save taxpayers $5.5bnA survey of 600 landlords found nearly two-thirds of landlords said they were planning to move their properties to a new state, which will be able to offer the same price or lower rent as beforeThe government has said it will save $5bn over the next five years by scrapping the National Housing Guarantee scheme.
The new scheme, known as the National Homes for Rent, will be launched later this year, when the Government publishes its housing affordability strategy.
Homeownership in Australia fell from 68 per cent in 1996 to 66 per cent by 2020, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) said.
The latest ABS figures show that only 13 per cent of all Australians are currently renting, up from 10 per cent two years ago.
But the number of renters in the country has grown since 2012, with a record 7.4 million households, up 11 per cent.
The ABC understands more than 1.6 million people now own their own home.
The government’s new Housing for Rent scheme, which was announced in April, will offer a range of options to landlords, with the most expensive option at $2,500 a week.
The Government says the scheme will reduce housing prices for renters, lower rental vacancy rates and provide more affordable homes for low-income families and people with disabilities.
The scheme was created by the Howard government and was designed to help low- and middle-income Australians buy a home in a way that would not be feasible in the existing market.
In August, the ABC revealed the National Homeownership Survey revealed only 14 per cent had bought a home.
However, the survey also showed almost two-fifths of owners said they would not have been able to afford to purchase a home if they had not been offered the National Rent Guarantee.
In its submission to the federal government, the National Hiring Council said it supported the Government’s efforts to help landlords sell their properties for more than the National Rental Guarantee, which is expected in 2021.
“The survey results also show that the vast majority of owners are very happy to sell their home to make more money,” the council said.
“As a result, the Government is committed to helping the sector to build new homes.”
The survey showed the average sale price of a home was $1.1 million.
The national home ownership survey also found most owners believed the rental market was stable.
“Despite significant price changes, owners remain committed to selling their homes for a lower price than the rent they would have received for renting,” the survey said.
While the Government says it will support landlords, it has warned it may not be able do so until after the National Household Survey, due to take place in October.