Australian renters struggle in cold winter as energy costs skyrocket: survey

Rising energy costs have become the latest problem for Australian tenants living in accommodation with ‘brutal’ conditions during the winter, according to a new study.

of cold and expensive reports Tenant advocacy group Better Renting measured temperature and humidity in more than 70 rental homes across Australia in June and July, and in most cases the temperature in those homes was above the WHO safe threshold of 18°C. Found below C (64°F).

As a result of the report’s findings, the organization has called on the Australian government to introduce minimum energy efficiency standards in rental properties to protect tenants.

“Renters have told us about getting sick more often, a state of constant worry about energy costs, and a never-ending battle with mold and damp.

Epoch Times photo
A lease sign is displayed outside a house in Edmondson Park, Sydney, Australia, 28 April 2016. (Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

In addition, many tenants had problems with the insulation of their rental properties.

According to the report, Australian homes are not built for the cold of winter, resulting in colder indoor temperatures in winter than in much colder countries where homes are better weatherproofed, insulated and heated.

Because tenants cannot make changes to the home they live in, rental properties tend to have lower energy performance, and renters spend more energy on heating than comparable owners.

“Many of the homes in this study were substandard, so even if people chose to use expensive, inefficient heaters, they still couldn’t keep warm.” the report said.

Poor rental housing situation across Australia

The report also found links between low temperatures in substandard homes and health problems such as increased blood pressure, weakened immune systems, more severe asthma and increased incidence of mental illness. also points out.

“The data paints a terrifying picture of the brutal conditions people face at home,” Dignam said.

The study found that indoor temperatures in rental properties across Australia were below minimum health levels 74% of the time.

In contrast, owners living in energy-efficient homes recorded temperatures below 18°C ​​less than 5% of the time.

Among the jurisdictions, New South Wales had the highest average humidity, with 83% of records above 60%, leading to ongoing mold problems in many rental homes in the state.

Tasmanian renters, on the other hand, reported the most hours below 18°C, at 91%, or more than 21 hours per day.

In contrast, rental properties in the Australian Capital Territory were colder than anywhere else, with an average minimum temperature of 7.4°C to 7.5°C.

Alfred Bui


Alfred Bui is an Australian reporter based in Melbourne, focusing on local and business news. He is a former small business owner and holds his two master’s degrees in business and business law. Please contact [email protected]