Disabled: Too Poor To Rent Accessible Properties13 Oct 2009
This article was also found on the www.SMH.com.au website. It talks about how people with disabilities live in lower income areas, they believe this is not an option but more likely they are forced to do so because they usually earn less and have higher living expenses due to disability.
The highest rate someone in Australia on the Disability Support Pension can receive is $569.80 per fortnight. I personally have lived on my own trying to survive on only this and it is almost impossible to pay for rent, car costs, food, bills ect. There would literally be nothing left over to have any luxuries that most people take for granted, like going out for dinner, having pay television or going to the movies.
Luckily for me, I have lived in a friends' granny flat for the past year where the rent is very low but am looking in the future at moving into a unit that is bigger, after looking around, there is practically nothing for someone in my situation to rent unless I had a higher income. For example, looking in St Marys in Western Sydney, if I could live anywhere, so not being restricted by stairs and tight spaces ect, then I could rent a 2 bedroom unit for $200 a week. Looking for something that would even come close to being wheelchair accessible, I would be looking at an extra $100 dollars a week, so that's $300 a week and it's a 3 bedroom villa which would be too big anyway. I don't even get the option to have a 1 or 2 bedroom place as most villa's and places with no stairs have 3 bedrooms, or are even more expensive than $300 a week.
I have always thought that there should be a real estate agency that finds property's just for people with special needs. In the past when I have tried to find somewhere to live, I have to call over 15 real estate agents before I can find a property that doesn't have stairs. If my disability real estate agency idea isn't possible, there should be some kind of government supplement other than the Disability Support Pension that assists disabled people with having to live in higher cost rental properties.
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