Vested interests 

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I read with much interest the current rental crisis affecting WA, indeed the whole of Australia, and note that none of the ‘suggestions’ are directed towards the perpetrators of this tragedy. 

The current situation is driven by real estate agents artificially forcing prices up (as well as unethically forcing prospective tenants to engage in a bidding war to secure a rental property) and the situation is worsened by allowing generous taxpayer funding on investment properties and overseas ownership.

New Zealand has recently taken away the ability of housing investment owners to claim a taxpayer deduction on the interest charged for their properties and will be charging more tax when the property is sold.

I can’t see the Australian Government introducing the same laws given that 225 Aussie federal pollies own 561 properties.

Even now, in Perth, a large number of tenants are being evicted and the rents raised beyond the CPI.

Once again, blame your local estate agent, who not only manages rental properties but also endeavours to keep the cost of buying a home at an all-time high. 

Yes, one answer is to build more public housing, but this would tend to lower the overall cost of properties.

This would impact investment properties, government revenue from all the taxes, estate and settlement agents and of course the media who benefit from advertising.

Apart from a major rethink around how we view property and housing, bearing in mind that after food our next need is shelter.

Most of the people who seem to be involved in ‘looking for answers’ will also be landowners and will be more inclined to protect their own rather than suggest an option that may devalue their ‘investment’.

Judging by what is happening in the rest of the world, the situation is driven by greed, and it will either take a major meltdown or a change in our attitudes towards housing ownership. Good luck with that.

I am certainly very interested in the outcome of the various forums endeavouring to find a solution.

Alan J Windsor, Mount Barker

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