Mortgage Pressure in Perth

In today’s West Australian residents of Butler were listed

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as one of the two suburbs most likely to be suffering from ‘mortgage stress’ with 33.9% of their income being used on simply paying off the housing loan.

Housing affordability in Perth is at critical levels with the average home cost being around $480 000.00, well beyond the reach of any first home buyers, unless they are prepared to put themselves in a crazy situation.

It results in all sorts of situations we never thought possible a few years back. There are people now who may never own their own home, there are people living with parents to get by, people living in cars… Rentals are extremely difficult to obtain and prices are going through the roof on them as well.

There is no easy answer in sight while WA’s economic boom continues.

Part of the problem is that some people seem to believe there is a certain standard of living that they are entitled to and aren’t prepared to do the ‘hard yards’ as they accumulate housing equity.

A couple of years back now I watched a current affairs show where a young couple were lamenting that they just couldn’t afford a house, however the type of house and suburb they were seeking was of the ‘4 x 2’ variety in an affluent suburb. It seemed absurd. Of course you can’t afford that kind of place, and even less so these days!

But if you’re prepared to buy a two bed unit or a smaller cheaper place then you can still live and get by.

I wonder if for some in our own area that sense of ‘entitlement’ is the reason they are doing it tough. There are plenty of people living in huge houses with plasmas, foxtel and new cars, all funded by astronomical mortgages who are apparently ‘doing it tough’.

‘Tough’ is possibly not the word I would use.

19 thoughts on “Mortgage Pressure in Perth

  1. we put 50% of our rather modest single income into our mortgage by choice. but we get by quite comfortably…. ???

    my question would be where does the rest of these battlers money go? private school fees? car loans? foxtel?

  2. I refuse to even consider foxtel – not a battle in our House as Mrs Grendel feels much the same way, as for a flat screen tv – we have a TV, in fact we have 2, they’ve been with us for years and will be with us until they die – I expect at least a 20-year life from a tv and i’m not going to buy a new one just to be fashionable. That said i love the concept of flat TV’s and the potential to save electricity but the current tech is not there yet.

    I’d also love a new shiny coffee machine,one that is able to turn out coffees at a good speed when guests drop in. I am not going to borrow money for this, I will save a few dollars a week for the 1-3 years it will take me. If in the meantime the money is needed for something else more important, then the plans go back a bit.

    I think it is lack of prioritising about what you need to have to get by – i know there is a lot of fat in our household budget that we could trim if we need to.

  3. Yes – at the end of the day so much of how we live is about choices.

    There are some for whom there are very few or no choices and they are the ones I would always choose to help.

    Most of us have ‘fat’ if we choose to see it that way, but lately private ed, flat screens etc have become ‘essentials’ rather than luxuries.

    Its the whole affluenza thing and it has us by the short and curlies.

    I don’t think we as Christians usually stand apart as models of restraint.

    I actually reckon ‘restraint and generosity’ are two virtues that ought to characterise us in these times. Both are very countercultural – and interestingly restraint probably moreso than generosity.

  4. The more I hear of this “Boom” the more I think it is a very selective situation. The only one benefitting from this boom are those engaged in the mining industry. The rise in house prices and rents( the so called result of this boom) has brought hardship to the average Australian trying to but a house. We are sending iron ore to China who are making everything that is made in Australia, but making it cheaper. We ( the industralists )are going to find that this boom will back fire on us when there nothing to be made here that is not made in China and cheaper

  5. In rich countries today, consumption consists of people spending money they don’t have to buy goods they don’t need to impress people they don’t like. – anon ( from – Affluenza, when too much is never enough.

  6. Hey cuzzie bro …just read in the Sunday paper Hamo, 3.2% of the Butler pop is Kiwi – sweet as, eh? But then 22.5% is POM – what’s a nice Irishman like you, living in such a demographic I ask?

  7. This is a global problem. We have the same issue in Minnesota. Many of the young people I work with think they should have the same homes their parents now have. Homes that took 20 years to acquire.

    It seems we want everything now and everyone is up to their eye balls in debt

  8. My circumstances do not involve mortgage stress but felt the need to comment on “my” situation.

    Centrelink have instructed me to find employment of 15 hours per week. Homeswest have just instructed me that should I “choose” to work, they will ask me to vacate my property as that will put me over the income limits they allow for government housing regardless that my rent to them will double with employment. If I refuse to do the 15 hours, Centrelink will cease my payments, if I do work, my children and I will be homeless as I will not be able to afford to live in the private rental market, let alone be able to find a property to rent.

    There is more value in my front and backyard than there is inside our household, as some of you already know. I cashed in all my superannuation under “hardship” reasons to get the things needed for my son’s medical issues over the years, sunk borrowed money into this property (which I’m still paying off) only to have it taken away trying to do the right thing. I assumed that one day I would be able to purchase this property. Guess I assumed wrong.

    I found a job straight away, worked for 3.5 days getting paid $23 per hour before I had to resign. They were not happy, neither was I but I had no choice.

    Being sarcastic, I need to find a job that pays a 40 year old a measley $8.80 per hour so Centrelink can take $3.52 of it, Homeswest can take nearly $2.20 of it, the tax man can take $1.32 of it and I get to keep $1.76 of it? At least this way I’ll have a roof over our heads and keep two Governement departments happy at the expense of my own.

    Needless to say this recent news has caused me more stress than I can take.

    Welcome to the Boom Town!!

  9. I agree Jackie – that is pure madness, and in an election year surely some pressure can be brought to bear via the local federal member, Judi Moylan – pretty decent generally speaking, even for a Liberal.

    I have included her contact detail below in case we can take this further.

    The Hon Judi Moylan MP

    Party: Liberal Party of Australia

    Parliament House Contact

    PO Box 6022

    House of Representatives

    Parliament House

    Canberra ACT 2600

    Tel: (02) 6277 4171

    Fax: (02) 6277 8400


    Electorate Office Contact

    Midland Office:


    490 Great Eastern Highway

    Greenmount WA 6056

    Postal Address:

    PO Box 1005

    Midland WA 6936

    Tel: (08) 9294 3222

    Fax: (08) 9294 2888

  10. I am sick of hearing teenagers and early 20/30’s saying that they want 4×2’s and all the latest mod cons.

    Russ and I just bought a 3×1 under $3ook and that needs a bit of work. We dont deserve what our parents have got because we havent had to work for it yet! We dont have a flat screen or latest in technology. But I honestly dont want it. I would rather live a simpler life. We are going to put a lot of work into the house we just bought and I assume we will be there for quite a number of years before we try and ‘upgrade’. Even if we dont have a bath to bath our kids, we will make do (dad always used the hose on us and we still turned out clean!).

    I always think that if you dont give God the opportunity to provide, then he won’t.

  11. And Jackie I’m sure if you needed a bit of ‘muscle’ either Grendel or I could go and see the appropriate people with you.

    It might be good for us to sit down and look at where you are at so we help you? What do you think?

    I have a bit of time at the moment so if you wanted to come around we could talk about it and work out how to approach it

  12. Thank you Andrew and Grendal too. I am normally pretty tough with all I have to deal with but this latest feels like the straw that broke the camels back so to speak.

    Thank you for your offer to help, I may just need it too. I’ll try and get myself ‘together’ tomorrow and get organised and go from there. Somehow though, I got the message last Friday that it’ll be a fruitless effort as it was made more than clear to me where my/our future lay regardless of our circumstances.

    Thank you both for your support.

  13. Working where I am now I am getting very knowledgable about the importance of ministerial letters in resolving matters so I’d be happy to draft the correspondence.

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