This Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute research examines possible cost-effective reforms of Commonwealth Rent Assistance (CRA) demand-side housing assistance that could improve housing outcomes for low-income renters.
The report found that one-third of low-income CRA households remain in rental housing stress (paying more than 30% of income in rent) even if all their CRA is put towards rent. At the same time, around one-fifth of low-income private rental households receive no CRA despite being in housing stress.
The research found that changing the CRA eligibility criteria to reflect housing need, defined as low-income private renters paying rents exceeding 30% of their income, produced the best outcomes.
This reform would mean CRA is best targeted at those who need it most, reducing the number of low-income private rental households in housing stress by approximately 370,000 (including some currently ineligible for CRA).
To download the report, got to the AHURI website