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Homelessness Week: Landlords Making a Difference

On a rainy Thursday night in Homelessness Week, over 50 people turned out to hear about things landlords can do to prevent and respond to homelessness.

Aunty Millie Penny, an Elder Co-Researcher with the Telethon Kids Institute’s Ngulluk Koolunga Ngulluk Koort (Our Children Our Heart) welcomed attendees to Nyoongar country. She spoke movingly and encouragingly of the impact a compassionate landlord had had on her family when she was a child.

Trish Blake of the Department for Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety provided the group with important information regarding changes to tenancy legislation that will make it easier for victims of domestic violence to leave or stay in their rented homes, depending on which is safer for them. Ms Blake noted that in addition to improving outcomes around family and domestic violence, these changes are also likely to result in less abandonment of properties and reduced repair costs for landlords.

Stephanie Hing, representing the RSPCA, talked about the benefits to landlords of making their properties pet friendly. Of interest to the group was her suggestion that landlords who were concerned could request a pet resume, prepared by a vet or other professional with knowledge of the animal. It was noted that where landlords had had a good experience with a particular pet, providing a written pet reference was likely to be very helpful to their tenants.

Diana MacTiernan of the Equal Opportunity Commission talked about the economic and significance of housing, and the protection housing has under the Equal Opportunity Act 1984. The Act allows for certain kinds of positive discrimination. Landlords may be interested in seeking out tenants from a particular group known to be discriminated against in the rental market. Ms MacTiernan encouraged them to contact the Equal Opportunity Commission to talk through ways of doing this that are consistent with the legislative requirements.

Kate Davis of Tenancy WA noted that one of the barriers to longer-term leases in WA is the current framing of the Residential Tenancies Act 1987, which can lead to tenants facing prohibitively high break-lease costs. Ms Davis made some suggestions for how landlords might negotiate longer term leases by voluntarily including a provision for termination by notice. She noted that in some cases, tenants may be reluctant to ‘impose’ on landlords by asking for necessary maintenance. She suggested that landlords proactively ask their tenants about maintenance needs. This will have the subsidiary benefit of ensuring that minor issues are fixed before they become major ones.

The final speaker of the night was Sadie Davidson or the Real Estate Industry of WA, who talked about the benefits of professional property management to landlords and tenants. The ongoing training required of property managers should mean that landlords and tenants both have access to an informed person who has the latest knowledge regarding ongoing changes to the Act. Good property managers can provide a balanced approach to dispute resolution.

Landlords are a critical – but sometimes invisible – part of our housing system. Shelter WA is excited by the potential for engaging with this important group, as we work towards a housing system that works for all of us.

Shelter WA Submission - Green Paper on Planning Reform

Shelter WA has long advocated for planning reform to deliver more social and affordable housing supply.

The Minister for Planning commissioned an independent review of the planning system to identify ways to make it more efficient, open and understandable to everyone.

The Green Paper on Planning Reform was released on 25 May and submissions were invited on the Green Paper, with the feedback received to be used to inform a White Paper which will be provided to Government for consideration.

Shelter WA supports the intention and principles behind planning reform. In listening to our membership base, Shelter WA has heard many frustrations from the community housing sector, community sector, developers, builders and individuals, with the current Western Australian planning system in facilitating social and affordable housing and housing affordability.

Shelter WA is hopeful that these reforms will go some way in addressing a these issues.

To read our submission please go to:

http://www.shelterwa.org.au/submissions

 

Industry Roundtable with a National Shelter CEO Visit

Shelter WA in partnership with the Master Builders Association convened an Industry Roundtable to discuss strategies to facilitate more affordable housing. 

Representatives from the housing industry, real estate sector, development and building industries and government joined with community housing providers, research institutions and community service organisations to discuss current barriers and blue-sky opportunities that can be collectively progressed.  

Attendees have given a commitment to meet again to progress key initiatives and to champion these to government. Shelter WA would like to thank Mr Ian Carter AM for chairing the roundtable and his ongoing support of this initiative.

Shelter WA also had the pleasure of hosting National Shelter CEO, Adrian Pisarski - who contributed to the roundtables from the Federal perspective.

Roundtable I

Roundtable II

Reclaiming the Great Australian Dream

Housing affordability will play a critical role in Australia’s prosperity, equality and economic opportunity during the next decade, Property Council national president Mark Steinert said. Speaking at a dinner to celebrate 20 years since the Property Council was established, Mr Steinert said the industry could be proud of its achievements during the past two decades. Australian cities, however, had not kept pace with the economic demands on them. “We have taxed our growth too much, held back the creation of the housing and investment the country needs, and not built the infrastructure for our growing cities,” Mr Steinert said. “Families, cleaners and cooks and pensioners can’t afford to buy or own a home and live in our cities.” The 12th annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, published earlier this year, found Australia has some of the most “severely unaffordable” housing markets in the world, with the median house price now 5.6 times the median annual salary. Mr Steinert further said the affordability crisis was “remarkable”, given Australia currently had the lowest interest rates in its history. “We must never forget that the Australian dream of owning your own home is the foundation of the Australian story. It’s why we have one of the biggest middle classes in the world. “Property has allowed millions of Australians to build security and wealth and to be become self-reliant. It takes pressure off government and gives us all peace of mind.” Mr Steinert wants us to see ourselves as part of the solution. “Because if any group should believe in housing affordability and in building better communities and more productive cities, it is our industry.” He also said that an investment in property was an investment in Australia. “You can’t pick it up and take the building or the land and send it elsewhere – we are the ultimate investment in Australia.”

Read More http://www.propertycouncil.com.au/Web/Content/News/National/2016/Reclaiming_the_Great_Australian_Dream.aspx 

  

 

Shelter SA is pleased to announce the launch of CapitalAsset 

Shelter SA is pleased to announce the launch of CapitalAsset  - a bold, ethical and socially responsible innovation in housing.  By creating unique partnerships between not-for-profit landowners and social impact investors, CapitalAsset Developments safely unlock land and under-used buildings, adding value while achieving both social outcomes and market rate returns.

There are two CapitalAsset opportunities: The launch event to hear from Housing Industry Innovation Panel members and network with CapitalAsset supporters. This will be held on 29 September at 4pm. Please RSVP sheltersa@sheltersa.asn.au prior to COB 24 September. Also, there will be a confidential discussion with the Housing Industry Innovation Panel for potential project partners.

For both opportunities please contact Dr. Alice Clark at alice.clark@sheltersa.asn.au or by telephone 0425 0606 49. 

AES 16 - International Evaluation Conference 

ASSISTANCE FOR REGIONAL WESTERN AUSTRALIAN NOT-FOR-PROFITS
Do you work for a regional Western Australian not-for-profit and wish to attend the aes16 International Evaluation Conference?
Lotterywest is supporting up to 25 staff or board members of regional Western Australian not-for-profit organisations to attend the aes16 International Evaluation Conference. The conference will be held in Perth at the Grand Hyatt from 19 to 21 September 2016.

Successful applicants will be provided a subsidy amount of assistance for registrations, travel, and accommodation.

Applications will be assessed on the selection criteria and need, with priority given to applicants from agencies located in remote and rural areas, and smaller organisations.
Selection criteria - You must be a staff or board member of a regional Western Australian not-for-profit:
  • Who has an interest in using evaluation in your organisation and/or previous experience in evaluation;
  • Whose organisation will benefit from you attending the conference; and
  • Who will share and/or apply the evaluation knowledge and skills gained from the conference with your colleagues.
Applications close 15 July 2016.

All applicants will be notified no later than 1 August 2016.
How to apply
For more informaton on levels of subsidy available, or to make an application form please click here. Complete the application form and return to conference@aes.asn.au, subject line “Application for Lotterywest grant”, no later than 15 July 2016.
Enquiries
If you have any questions, please email conference@aes.asn.au
Conference website

 

Q Shelter annual housing and homelessness conference theme is ‘Empowered People, Connected Communities, Sustainable Housing’.

Q Shelter will deliver the third annual housing and homelessness Conference in Cairns on 14 and 15 July this year. The theme for this two-day event is ‘Empowered People, Connected Communities, Sustainable Housing’.

The Q shelter Conference is known for bringing together the housing and homelessness assistance industry to address common challenges and share best practices from national and international speakers.

Early bird tickets expire soon, so visit www.qsconference.org to secure your place at the Conference this year. The Conference will feature the Hon Mick de Brenni MP (Minister for Housing and Public Works), Dr. Sam Tsemberis (founder of Pathways to Housing in New York City), Lucas Patchett and Nicholas Marchesi of Orange Sky Laundry (2016 Young Australians of the Year) 

Check out the list of speakers presenting at the housing and homelessness conference: www.qsconference.org


  


 

Q Shelter annual housing and homelessness conference theme is ‘Empowered People, Connected Communities, Sustainable Housing’.

Q Shelter will deliver the third annual housing and homelessness Conference in Cairns on 14 and 15 July this year. The theme for this two-day event is ‘Empowered People, Connected Communities, Sustainable Housing’.

The Q shelter Conference is known for bringing together the housing and homelessness assistance industry to address common challenges and share best practices from national and international speakers.

Early bird tickets expire soon, so visit www.qsconference.org to secure your place at the Conference this year. The Conference will feature the Hon Mick de Brenni MP (Minister for Housing and Public Works), Dr. Sam Tsemberis (founder of Pathways to Housing in New York City), Lucas Patchett and Nicholas Marchesi of Orange Sky Laundry (2016 Young Australians of the Year) 

Check out the list of speakers presenting at the housing and homelessness conference: www.qsconference.org


 

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