Renters’ rage on the rise
Thursday 27 September 2007
Rents rising across the country have triggering 'renters rage' amongst a quarter of Kiwi renters, with many experiencing negative psychological effects. One third of renters also expressed a genuine fear of never being able to own their own home, according to a national survey, conducted by allrealestate.co.nz.
‘Desperate’, ‘anxious’ and ‘helpless’ – these are the words renters use to describe how they feel. “The psychological perception of even a small increase of $10 per week can push some renters to the brink of despair,” said allrealestate.co.nz's general manager Shaun Di Gregorio.
‘Rent’ has been coined a dirty four-letter-word by many New Zealanders, giving rise to a social divide between renters and homeowners which, according to this research is worsening.
“A significant drop in housing affordability over the last 10 years has forced many people to stay in rental accommodation, and high rental prices are making it impossible for prospective first home buyers to save enough money to think about buying a house," says Di Gregorio.
The survey revealed:
§ 55% of renters expressed “anxiety” over their renting predicament
§ 35% of renters felt “helpless” in their current rental situation, while one in five admitted a feeling of rage and fury
§ A dismal 9% of renters are happy with their current accommodation
§ A mere 1.7% feel well cared for by their landlords
§ 65% believe they are paying more than they really can afford on rent
§ 56% of prospective tenants are being deterred from applying for properties based on the number of people at inspections
§ 34% of renters feel that given the current housing market, they will never be able to purchase their own property
§ The majority of respondents would rather stay in sub-ideal rental properties than chance their arm in the market.
“Renters desperate for a solution spend many hours looking at listings on allrealestate.co.nz, so we have some insight into the stresses renters are facing. It’s important to be aware of the roll-on effects rising rents and home shortages are having on paying tenants," he says.
The survey, which was designed to study the concerns of the forgotten players in the real estate game – renters – provides a glimpse into the hardships experienced by nearly a third of Kiwis who don’t own their own home.
“The overwhelming challenges facing this large section of our society paints a pretty dim picture,” says Di Gregorio.
“With so many New Zealanders living in rental accommodation, it’s about time some status was given back to renters.”
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