Kiwi homeownership is losing ground, with one-fifth of retirees now renting, and a “shocking” increase in elderly tenants predicted.
The Retirement Commission says it’s an issue that needs urgent attention.
The committee should know. A survey on housing conditions for the elderly has just been completed.
Currently, 20 percent of people over 65 live in rented housing. After 25 years, by 2048, that proportion is projected to jump up to 40 percent. This equates to over 500,000 retirees, or about 600,000.
Given this projection, the Commission stresses that New Zealand needs to rethink how it supports the housing needs of older people.
The survey found that one-third of New Zealanders aged 55-64 do not own their own home. A fifth person over the age of 65 is in the same situation.
The commission’s director of policy research, Dr Susie Morrissey, said figures for retiree rentals are expected to jump to 40%. Put another way, by 2048 he will be unable to own a home for her 600,000 people over the age of 65.
She said “amazing predictions” will change the housing landscape in New Zealand. Urgent action is needed, she said.
Looking at the housing requirements of older renters suggests a need for smaller, more accessible housing with wider doorways and step-free housing.
Morrissey said the future of the European Commission may require some incentives for developers. They tend to focus on building larger homes because they are more profitable, she explained.
Pension rates (such as the National Pension) now assume that retirees own their homes outright and do not have to pay rent or a mortgage.
Morrissey said New Zealand therefore needs to look at how it can help with housing costs for older people.
This is especially true in urban centers where rents are highest and homeownership rates are lowest.
“We know homeownership contributes significantly to retirement well-being, and if we know that fewer and fewer people will be in that position, it means we need to start thinking about what we’re doing for them,” she said.
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https://cathnews.co.nz/2023/07/24/plan-now-for-staggering-rise-in-retirees-renting/ Plan now for the ‘amazing’ increase in retiree rental housing