EVERYONE NEEDS A PLACE TO CALL HOME
We live in a peaceful and prosperous society. So why is it that when we’re walking down Crown St or King St or through a local park we see more people sleeping rough than ever before?
Shamefully NSW has seen a greater increase in homelessness than anywhere else in Australia, and the rent is too damn high. We need to make a change, to make sure that everybody has a place to call home.
Everyone deserves access to a safe, affordable and secure home. Homes should be for people to live in, not a speculative investment to make money. The Greens have the courage and vision to implement measures to ensure everyone who needs a home can afford one.
Sydney housing is just plain unaffordable. Rents have soared and renters rights are amongst the weakest in the developed world. House prices are astronomically high in Sydney and still unaffordable in many NSW cities and in the regions. Young people have quite simply been locked out of the market.
Both Liberal and Labor Governments have sold off public housing in the inner-city and elsewhere. Waiting lists are growing, and people are being pushed out.
We love the diversity of the inner-city. Students, artists and low-income workers are a vital part of our community. We don’t want a city divided by income and wealth. We need housing policies that make everyone welcome.
The Greens are campaigning for affordable housing both here in NSW and at a federal level. We have an achievable plan that will ensure housing is within reach for everyone:
- The Greens believe housing should be a universal right. Just like Medicare and our public school system, everyone should be able to apply for social housing if they need it. Social housing should be a desirable and realistic alternative to taking out a mortgage or renting for life in the private market. The Greens will grow the housing stock to make homes available to people most in need and those on higher incomes who choose to be part of our universal housing scheme. Read more here.
Rental properties are people’s homes, and renters deserve the same security and quality of life as homeowners. But our current rental laws allow dodgy landlords to maximise their returns, at the expense of people’s security and safety. The Greens will give people who rent in NSW a better deal. Read more here.
The Greens support a ‘Housing First’ approach, whereby housing will be provided for people who become homeless and additional needs are met with ongoing and professional support.
People experiencing homelessness will be offered social housing for as long as they require it. Read more here.
- Our Cool Homes, Cool Planet initiative will mean that every home, new or old, will be zero emissions by 2030. Zero emissions houses will be easier to cool in summer and warm in winter. Every private home will make the transition to a pollution-free future by 2030, with appropriate support for households. Read more here.
- All local councils in NSW should have the ability to progress initiatives that increase the supply of affordable housing in local government areas. Initiatives such as inclusionary zoning and an Empty Homes Levy are important to grow affordable housing. Read more here.
- Investing in housing means making a large investment – as well it should. Guaranteeing affordable, stable and sustainable housing to everybody is one of the most important things we can do as a society. This is a productive investment that will create positive social and financial returns for decades to come. Read more here.
OUR 10 POINT PLAN FOR RENTERS IN NSW
Legislative Reform Priorities for the Review of the NSW Residential Tenancies Act
- End Unfair ‘No-Grounds’ Evictions by specifying and limiting grounds for eviction and stopping people from being kicked out of their home for no reason.
- Cap Rents by Limiting Rent Increases to once per year. At present there are no restrictions on how often rent can be increased (provided requisite notice is given).
- Regulate to Prevent Rent Increases Beyond CPI. At present there are no restrictions on how much rent can be increased (provided requisite notice is given).
- Improve Flexibility for Tenants in cases of Domestic and Family Violence. The ability to terminate leases without penalties for people who are subject to domestic violence based on evidence from a specified list of professionals.
- Increased Transparency through the creation of Publicly Available Maintenance Logs and Maintenance Reports to address the serious health and safety concerns faced by many people renting and to provide information to potential tenants so that they are aware of any issues prior to entering into a lease arrangement. This log would include all maintenance requests made and work completed.
- Establish rental housing standards, though regulated sustainability, safety, accessability and efficiency measures.
- Allowing tenants to more easily make minor modifications to a property such as installing picture hooks, blinds or reasonable security measures.
- Remove ‘no pets’ clauses from rental agreements. Having pets is both a personal choice and personal responsibility. Wherever possible, people living in rental accommodation should have the same rights as people who have a mortgage or own their own home.
- Improve Management of Tenant’s Bonds and Interest. Increase oversight on landlords making claims on bonds and support tenants to transfer bonds between properties. Interest made on bonds should benefit the tenant, through direct reimbursement and a percentage used for Tenant Advice and Advocacy Services and affordable housing measures.
- Improve Protections for People Living in Sharehouses by ensuring that they have access to legally enforceable protections and rights.