NY Today News
NY Today News: Your Daily Dose of Local and Global Headlines

‘Doesn’t make any sense’: call for Queensland home park rent caps to apply to all tenants

It’s “unfair” that a proposed rent cap for Queensland manufactured home park residents will not be considered for tenants in the wider private housing market, advocates say.

Manufactured home parks are marketed as retirement villages for those over 50, where residents lease the land from the park owner, with rent going towards shared facilities and utilities.

Under the state’s Manufacturing Homes Act, park owners are able to increase rent each year in line with CPI. They are also allowed to charge more if they’ve incurred significant operational costs, and increase rent further every three years after a “market review”.

The state government recently announced it is considering a maximum limit on yearly site rent increases, prohibiting market rent reviews and requiring park comparisons to be published online.

The move was welcomed by the chief executive of Tenants Queensland, Penny Carr, who questioned

“Why is it that the government will consider this topic with manufactured home residents but … not residential tenants?”.

“It doesn’t make any sense to me, and I think it’s unfair,” Carr said.

As rent inflation in Queensland outpaces all other jurisdictions, the state has seen the highest increases in homelessness in the country.

The Palaszczuk government passed legislation in March to limit the frequency of rent increases to once a year. However, it has not taken up suggestions by stakeholders to tie the amount rents can increase to CPI.

Carr’s calls were echoed by Jackson Hills at Q Shelter, and Aimee McVeigh, chief executive of QCOSS.

“We are in an unprecedented housing crisis, which requires unprecedented measures to fix it,” McVeigh said.

“If the Queensland government can introduce a rental cap for residential park residents, it can also introduce one more widely, and we are calling on them to do so.”

Founding member of the Alliance Of Manufactured Home Owners, Brad Goodwin, said any move to cap home parks’ annual rent increases should be aligned to movements in the aged care and disability pensions.

skip past newsletter promotion

“I’ve got 70 and 80-year-old people saying, ‘I can’t afford my medication, my insurance, I’m frightened.’ This makes me angry,” he said.

Goodwin agreed with renter advocates that the government should implement a broader emergency measure to restrict all rent increases.

“There should be a rent cap imposed on the wider housing sector, not just us,” he said.

“We’ve got tents getting set up in parks across Queensland.”

A spokesperson from the department of housing said in residential parks, homeowners buy their manufactured home but rent the land it is on from a park owner. This left homeowners “little option” other than to sell their home if rent becomes unaffordable, they said.

There are more than 200 residential parks in Queensland, with the total number of home sites increasing from 14,000 to more than 23,000 in the past decade.

Consultation on the changes is open until 26 June.

News Source