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Planning decisions and tenancy laws need to change if Australia is to avoid a dystopian future with socially polarized cities, argues urban sociologist Peter Walters.
Home ownership, the Australian Dream, is becoming a fading hope for those without an existing foothold in the market. For increasing numbers of younger Australians, the dream will give way to a future as tenants. This will have far-reaching negative impacts on how people live together in both the inner city and the suburbs unless housing, planning and investment policies come to terms with this shift.
Robert Menzies’ Australian Dream of home ownership is beyond the reach of increasing numbers of young Australians. This is due to a multitude of factors, including the tax treatment of property and our attractiveness as a haven for foreign investment. If we are to become a “nation of renters,” how are our cities equipped to deal with this? […]