Queensland Housing Minister Tim Mander says he’ll consider an overhaul of how public housing rents are calculated.
An overhaul of how public housing rents in Queensland are calculated will not include adding in the casual wages of teenagers, the state housing minister says.
Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk has said the Newman government is considering using school childrens’ casual wages to help determine household incomes.
“Their part-time pocket money is going to be pooled together (to decide) how much rent a family should pay,” she said.
The government also wants to make it harder for people to join public housing waiting list by dropping the maximum eligible household income from around $80,000 to around $60,000, the opposition says.
Housing Minister Tim Mander says there are too many exemptions taken into account when calculating how much tenants should pay, but he will not be going after teen wages.
Under current rules, the bigger the chunk of your income that comes from things like Family Tax Benefit or child support, the lower your effective rental rate.
That means tenants on the aged pension are paying more than people with kids.
“While there is clearly room to tighten up some of the exemptions, I can categorically rule out including the part time wages of school kids in rental calculations,” he told AAP.
Only 151 households of the 53,855 using public housing pay the required 25 per cent of their weekly income in rent, costing taxpayers $100 million a year.
Most people pay less than 20 per cent and 40 per cent of people pay less than 15 per cent, figures from the department of housing show.
Without reform, public housing rents will continue to be about a third of what people would pay for a similar property in the private market.
“That’s not only unfair on those on low incomes struggling to get by in the private market, there are also huge inequities amongst those already in the system,” Mr Mander told AAP.