Owning your own home is a core part of the Australian dream. We’ve long been told that if you work hard and play by the rules, you’ll get ahead. Unfortunately, interest rates, inflation, and the rising cost of living are increasingly tightening the financial vice around so many Australian families.
I am deeply concerned about the impact of rising interest rates on hardworking Australians. Between 2011 and April 2022, interest rates did not rise once. In the last 15 months, Australians have faced 12 interest rate rises, with interest rates increasing from 0.1% to 4.1%. Those interest rate rises, as well as inflation and the rising cost of living generally, mean that a typical Australian family with a mortgage is now $25,000 worse off than they were this time last year.
This is directly affecting the tens of thousands of people across the Berowra electorate who own their home with a mortgage. At the last census in 2021, the median mortgage repayment in Berowra was almost $700 per month higher than the state-wide median. At the time, almost 20% of Berowra residents were paying more than 30% of their household income on mortgage repayments. That number is even larger today, as interest rates continue to rise and wages remain stagnant.
This doesn’t just impact younger Australians attempting to break into the property market, or families who are struggling to meet their mortgage obligations at the same time as raising children. Increasingly I am hearing from parents and grandparents who are fortunate enough to own their home outright, but are deeply concerned about the financial vice that their children and grandchildren have been placed in.
I will continue to advocate for the State and Federal Governments to do more to support our local community during this exceptionally difficult economic period.