A new survey from the Affordable Housing Hallmark Research Initiative finds that many people living in share housing in Victoria are facing a precarious future as a result of COVID-19, with reports of job losses and financial stress.
The initial survey has revealed the significant impact of COVID-19 on members of share houses in Victoria.
Key findings include:
- Almost three quarters of survey respondents have lost their job or had their hours reduced
- 50% report a reduction in their mental health
- 50% say their financial situation has worsened since the start of COVID-19
- Young people, visa-holders and people in casual employment have been particularly impacted
- Access to supportive social networks and JobKeeper and JobSeeker payments are the most important resources supporting Victorians living in share houses.
In the news
Pursuit: People in share housing are struggling to cope in COVID-19
"Around 74 per cent of people living in share housing in Victoria have lost their job or are working reduced hours since the beginning of COVID-19, with one in five reporting that they had gone without meals in order to afford other necessities.
That’s according to our research, which surveyed more than a thousand people who have lived in a share house in Victoria at any time in 2020.
Our survey, which we ran in June, aimed to investigate the impact of various types of socio-economic shocks caused by COVID-19 on share house occupants including income, work, mental health and housing conditions or affordability.
Understanding the scale of this impact is important as many of these people represent a vulnerable segment of the population that is largely understudied and often neglected by policy makers."
Domain: Young Australians in shared housing some of the hardest hit during COVID-19, survey finds
"People living in shared houses have been one of the hardest-hit groups during the pandemic, with almost three in four losing their jobs or losing hours, new research shows.
One in five share-house residents skipped meals to afford necessities and about half reported reduced mental health, a University of Melbourne survey found.
It also found people living in shared houses were already a particularly vulnerable demographic: 82 per cent were under the age of 35, half were in non-permanent jobs and a fifth were visa holders.
A fifth pawned or sold something to afford necessities, and a similar proportion could not pay the rent or mortgage on time."