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Oi Stanhope! How’s the affordable accommodation working out for you?

By johnboy - 15 February 2010 27

Every so often Our Chiefly Leader comes out and proclaims the wonders of his affordable housing programs.

More often than not they mean a few lottery winners get a sweet deal and the rest of the populations has been further shafted.

Last week the Canberra Times ran a story on the ANU’s desperate efforts to find places for all the students it promises accommodation to. Aside from putting up hundreds of students in hotels they’re begging for help:

Pro-vice-chancel lor (students) Professor Elizabeth Deane appealed to students on Wednesday to offer spare rooms in private or share houses to help meet the demand.

Due to the high demand for accommodation in Semester 1, if you did not meet the requirements of the accommodation guarantee you need to start sourcing off-campus accommodation now. Offers will continue to be made where vacancies arise due to cancellation; however there is only a small chance of this happening. The private market in Canberra is experiencing heavy demand and the estimated time required to secure accommodation is approximately 2-4 weeks. It is essential to organise temporary accommodation before you arrive. UAS staff can assist you with enquiries about off-campus accommodation. Please see below for more information.

It’s become so bad that informal community networks (rotarians, churches) are billeting out desperate international students foolish enough to enter this circle of hell. (And if certain Stanhopian cheerleaders want to deny that; there’s one in my parent’s spare room right now.)

So now the rents for those of us without a winning ticket in the government housing pools are not only unaffordable, there’s also a failure in market supply.

How much are we spending luring people here again?

What’s Your opinion?


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27 Responses to
Oi Stanhope! How’s the affordable accommodation working out for you?
dereg52 8:41 pm 15 Feb 10

This is an ANU issue.

Offering a guarantee to first year interstate/internations students can only work if they have sufficient accomodation already.

Guess what, they don’t. Meaning more people want rental housing, which is increasing competition and jacking up prices.

The market will always be skewed because students are up against well paid public servants.

TP 3000 8:39 pm 15 Feb 10

I’ve been told the main problem is $$$$$$. At the end of 2009, Canberra had a vacany rate of something in the range of 0.9. Now for the university’s & CIT have all increased there students numbers in 2010 by a few 1,0000 students.

Now only a low percentage of the extra few 1,000 live in Canberra & as such has accommodation. So where are the others to be housed?

-The ANU has constructed the shipping container complex & bought a few apartments around Canberra to house students.

-The UC has constructed/upgraded a huge area with quite a few rooms, so they haven’t been hit as hard as the ANU. But they have also been forced to purchase a few units around Belconnen.

cranky 7:54 pm 15 Feb 10

Having a rapidly emptying nest, the thought of letting out rooms to students had crossed the family mind.

Basketcase’s comments (#9) put a whole diferent complexion on things. What are the rules and regs on this? Seems pointless to rent out a room for $150-$200 per week to then donate $75 to Sonic.

Perhaps a major reason for a lack of student accommodation?

bd84 7:49 pm 15 Feb 10

artuoui said :

The ANU sold off loads of residential properties that were previously available for student accommodation, going back ten years or so. Plenty of people were asking where ANU students who came to Canberra were supposed to live.

I can’t see why Stanhope should be blamed for the ANU’s short sightedness.

Stanhope did think of it, that’s why he sold off all the carparking in the city to the ANU to build 2 new student residences, with a 3rd on the way. He just doesn’t have enough of a brain to think of all the other consequences that were a result of doing this.

urchin 7:38 pm 15 Feb 10

The ANU issue is a result of poor planning. They should have been predicting the growth in student population and doing something about it starting years back. Ultimately the VC needs to take responsibility for letting things reach this state of affairs.

Having said that, housing as a whole is a joke in the ACT. In this city, surrounded by (and including) lots and lots and lots of nothing there is no reason why houses should be as obscenely expensive as they are. The ACT gov’t is complicit in this, propping up prices by pricing new land even higher than surrounding, existing land. They have not kept their own promise to release affordable lots of land in the 60000-120000 range.

As the OP says, he pops out to say how much he is doing (to line the pockets of developers) and then disappears to count the money he’s made off of stamp duty, land sales and rates.

There needs to be a serious investigation in to the links between gov’t and property developers I reckon.

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_ 4:09 pm 15 Feb 10

I’ve got three 2 bedroom units just finishing being renovated this week, and we already have paid up tenants waiting to move in. The rental market is unbelievably tight for anything that’s not a total dump (and even dumps get moved fairly quickly). People need to get smarter about this (ie setting up to share 4 bedroom homes). Unfortunately, some of the larger building projects are only just coming back on line after financing delays.

basketcase 3:59 pm 15 Feb 10

A problem is that once you rent out some rooms, you are up for land tax, about $3000 a year depending where you live. Over a 40 week year this represents another $75 per week you have to tack onto the rent.

Ends up kinda expensive for the student.

artuoui 2:52 pm 15 Feb 10

The ANU sold off loads of residential properties that were previously available for student accommodation, going back ten years or so. Plenty of people were asking where ANU students who came to Canberra were supposed to live.

I can’t see why Stanhope should be blamed for the ANU’s short sightedness.

DavoDavo 2:42 pm 15 Feb 10

p1 said :

Maybe this explains the calls I have had the last four nights at midnight from someone from Pakistan with very poor english skills? (so poor all I could work out was that he was from Pakistan).

Ah, so that’s what all those calls I’ve been getting were about! I thought it was one of those pesky telemarketers trying to sell me something – or maybe trying to get my bank account details – or, maybe I have won a lottery that I didn’t enter?

p1 12:26 pm 15 Feb 10

Maybe this explains the calls I have had the last four nights at midnight from someone from Pakistan with very poor english skills? (so poor all I could work out was that he was from Pakistan).

grundy 11:37 am 15 Feb 10

We’ve had tons of Couch Surfing requests from international (and some aussie) students who are just coming here now to ‘look for accommodation’…

We’ve turned them all down since no doubt they would be stuck for a month or two trying to find something!

gibbery 10:33 am 15 Feb 10

Just out of curiosity, how much would one charge for a boarder in a spare room?

T1G3R 10:10 am 15 Feb 10

There’s never enough housing, oh well too bad too sad.

James-T-Kirk 9:55 am 15 Feb 10

Bugga,

I have a little rental that I am more than happy to offer to groups at a mere $250/pw per person.

I thing the correct phrase is ‘supply and demand’…
🙂

sepi 9:27 am 15 Feb 10

Hmm – this would be a very good time to offer a homestay room – you can charge 200.00 a week for a furnished room and supplied meals. Tax free too. Pity I’ve got no spare rooms any more!

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