Almost no homes in Bendigo are suitable for those on parenting payments, Youth Allowance or Newstart, Anglicare's annual rental snapshot has shown.
Regional Director of Anglicare Victoria Francis Lynch said that the figures showed it was slightly harder this year to find an affordable property in Bendigo than in previous years.
Just six percent of properties in Bendigo were affordable and appropriate for households receiving welfare payments on the weekend of March 23, 2019.
Zero properties in Bendigo were affordable and suitable for some household types.
The rental affordability snapshot analyses rental properties across the state advertised on a specific weekend, to find out what proportion are appropriate and affordable. It defines an affordable rental as costing less than 30 percent of a household's total income.
Mr Lynch said that when people could not find a rental they could afford, they would spend more than 30 percent of their income on accommodation. This pushed people into a lot of other strain on their finances.
"What that means is they really have a lot of financial stress, they'll struggle with other parts. Many people will prioritise accommodation over their health, or the quality of their food, or the expenses for their children," he said.
"So somebody might have a place to stay but struggle with a lot of their other expenses."
Only nine properties in Bendigo were both affordable and appropriate for households receiving welfare payments, the snapshot showed.
Fifty-eight percent of properties advertised in Bendigo - or 87 homes - were affordable and appropriate for households on the miminum wage.
Many people will prioritise accommodation over their health, or the quality of their food, or the expenses for their children.Francis Lynch
Zero properties were affordable or appropriate for single parents on parenting payments or Newstart, singles on Newstart or Youth Allowance, and singles in a share house on Youth Allowance.
Couples with two children on Newstart could only access one percent of properties.
On top of the strain of housing costs, often affordable accommodation was more expensive to heat and cool, Mr Lynch said.
This made the total cost of living in a house much more than the rent.
Low wage growth and a Newstart payment that has not risen for 25 years where some of the factors that had made it more difficult to find affordable rental accommodation, Mr Lynch said.
Rising costs of electricity, gas and water also put more financial stress on people, he said.
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