Quantifying Australia’s unmet housing need

Shelter WA invested in a report led by CHIA National and delivered by the University of New South Wales examining unmet housing need in Australia.

Quantifying Australia’s unmet housing need: a National Snapshot was prepared for the Community Housing Industry Association by the UNSW City Futures Research Centre.

It shows one in 15 Australian households were experiencing homelessness, overcrowded homes or rental stress on census night in 2021.

Key Findings

• Households with low incomes face significant housing pressures across Australia.
• Estimates based on the 2021 Australian census indicate that over half a million low-income households were not in appropriate housing on census night. This is around one in fifteen households.
• These Australians were either experiencing homelessness, in overcrowded homes or spending over 30 per cent of their income on rent.
• This analysis provides a national snapshot, with more detailed analysis and a finer geographic breakdown of data to be published separately.

Community Representation

Large capital cities had the highest numbers of unmet housing needs, and had grown over the last five years. Sydney increased eleven per cent, Melbourne four per cent and Brisbane five per cent. The analysis also reveals the communities with both the highest numbers of unmet needs and the highest percentages of unmet needs.

The national snapshot shows that 5.4 per cent of Perth households and 5.2 per cent of households in regional WA currently have unmet housing need.

Report Link

Quantifying Australia’s unmet housing need: A National Snapshot is available here.