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Picture shows what’s wrong with Australia


Sydney auctioneer Tom Panos has laid bare the grim truth about Australia’s housing future in a short clip pointing out the sad reality of Australia’s wages.

Mr Panos has been vocal on social media recently amid Australia’s gargantuan cost of living increases, which have forced most young people to spend money they would normally be saving for a house on soaring supermarket bills and skyrocketing rent increases.

In his latest video, the real estate coach painted a bleak picture for the average cafe worker who he says would have to save vigorously for their entire life just to get a deposit together for the most basic of dwellings.

“See the guy behind us, I know what he’s making … $20 or $30 an hour, works his a*** off,” Mr Panos said while filming himself getting a coffee at a cafe.

“If this guy starts saving up, he’ll be able to get a deposit for a property when he’s 63 years of age.

“Yeah, you’ve got everyone worrying about Brittany Higgins, and this guy is going to have to work for 45 years just to get a deposit.

“Look at what you’re making people do to buy real estate. Make the main thing… housing.”

The Australian Treasury says “nominal wages have picked up and are currently growing at the fastest rate in over a decade”.

A 0.9 per cent rise in the Wage Price Index in the December quarter means wages were 4.2 per cent higher through the year, marking the equal fastest annual growth since 2009.

But the demand for housing, especially in our capital cities, is still outstripping wages growth as prices push beyond what is reasonably achievable for Aussies earning an average wage.

The only solution, it appears, is “the bank of mum and dad”.

Those lacking rich parents who capitalised on relatively cheap housing last century have had to rapidly readjust their expectations and come to terms with the fact that they will be paying someone else’s mortgage through the rental system until, and after, they retire.

Mr Panos, who has featured as an auctioneer on The Block, also called out real estate agents who are capitalising on the crisis.

In a video posted last week, Mr Panos said a “small cohort” of agents were acting like bankers did before the global financial crisis of 2008.

“It was a money trail; do what you want, sell what you want, make money, don’t worry about the client,” he said. “This is going to be a party that’s never gonna end.

“But at some point the hero moved from being the vendor, the client, and the real estate agent decides to become the hero.

“Including the way they acted, the way they behave, even the way they market it.

“In some properties, the way they market it, the agent is more marketed than the actual home. And it’s being funded by the vendor.”

Tuesday’s budget aims to alleviate pressure

After convening a national cabinet meeting on Saturday, Anthony Albanese announced a $11.3 billion injection of additional funding to help accelerate new supply, combat homelessness, and assist those fleeing domestic violence with more crisis accommodation, in a tacit admission that its effort to alleviate Australia’s acute housing crisis had not been enough.

While key housing stakeholders like Homelessness Australia and Master Builders Australia have thrown their support behind government’s pre-budget announcement, the Coalition and the Greens have both slammed the package.

Michael Sukkar, the Coalition’s housing spokesman, said the announcement was a “fraud on the Australian people”.

“It’s a catastrophe that the government has confirmed there will be nothing in Budget to address or alleviate Labor’s housing crisis,” he said.

Greens housing spokesman Max Chandler-Mather slammed Labor for “repackaging” a Morrison government housing and homelessness agreement and announcing a $1bn package for social housing secured by the minor party in negotiations last year, and “pretending both are new”.

“What Labor has actually announced today is no extra money for social housing, nothing for renters and no plan to cap rents. This is a fake announcement and a disaster for renters,” he said.

“Today’s announcement is worse than tinkering around the edges, it is locking in the status quo, and will do nothing to tackle a housing crisis that is destroying millions of lives.”

The lion’s share of the package will be a $9.3bn worth of fresh funds to establish the new five-year National Agreement on Social Housing and Homelessness, with support to be administered by state and territory governments.

Representing a doubling of the federal homelessness funding to $400m a year, the states and territories will be cumulatively required to match the increased commonwealth spend dollar-for-dollar, ramping up crisis support and social housing supply.

Speaking from Tasmania, Mr Albanese said Labor’s “Homes for Australia” plan would keep the dream of home ownership within reach by bolstering supply.

“Only Labor is committed to building more homes. Only Labor is committed to practical policies to go forward, which is what we have done with our $25bn before these announcement that we are making today,” he said.

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