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HOMELESSNESS WOULD KNOW NO LIMITS While Airbnb & Others Are Effectively Gutting Our Housing Supply

SBS reporter, Amelia Dunn, aired a segment on Sunday night: “All smiles at the snow today for seasonal workers Andy, Annabel and Kieran. But they consider themselves lucky – because they’ve actually got somewhere to stay. They say the accommodation crisis for workers in the Snowy Mountains is a “disaster”.” Also interviewed was 36-year-old Chris Thomas. “He’s a Cooma local but for six months he’s been sleeping in his car. He works full time in carpentry but can’t find affordable housing. He says he’d leave the area but wants to be close to his son.”

Homes advertised for residential tenancies (SQM Research) during April 2022 by postcode in the Snowy Monaro are as follows:

2624 - 0

2625 - 0

2626 - 1

2627 - 0 (includes Jindabyne)

2628 - 4

2629 - 1

Total – 6 homes for rent. (Currently, no further data for May/June 2022.)

There are 1,005 active Airbnb/VRBO (Expedia) rentals in the Snowy Monaro Area.

Joan Bird - Ray White Jindabyne Agency Principal is a Panel Member of the NSW Govt - Property Services Review Panel. This prestigious appointment means you have the advantage of Joan’s extensive knowledge of the rules and regulations governing your property sale or purchase (12/11/21).” In April this year it was announced that Ms Bird and co were “stepping away from Ray White Jindabyne and…starting a new journey as Alpine Country Properties”. “The team at Alpine Country Properties…has sold 2 properties and leased 3 properties in the last 12 months.” The three properties were leased for $530-$1,380/week. Alpine Country Properties currently have no rental properties available however, they are advertising 20 homes as holiday rentals. They also frequently advertise for cleaning staff via social media.

Ms Bird’s inclusion of the State Government’s Property Services Review Panel follows her invitation and inclusion on a NSW Department of Planning task force that considered the short-term rental of residential housing, while representatives from Community Resident Groups were barred from the process, apparently by Government and Public Servants.

ABC Reporters Holly Tregenza and Fatima Olumee will, in the next few days, share a story for those who have been holidaying on the NSW South Coast. They write: “Please be kind, gentle and compassionate to those you might pitch a tent next to. This is what a shortage of 400,000 affordable homes across the country really looks like. I spent this arvo with this 4-year-old (see photo) who lives in a tent in a campsite on the South Coast with her 5-year-old brother, and her parents. She told me she gets cold at night and said she ‘wishes she had a house’. This long weekend, holiday makers will set up camp right next to this family. But while one group gets to go home at the end of a few days, these two little kids and their parents will stay…”

At noon today, this long weekend, High Street, Argyle Place and Lower Fort Street in Millers Point and The Rocks: cleaning vehicles and staff were moving in as tourists with suitcases vacated their Airbnb rentals. Transients with strong North American accents say they’ve had a fabulous time; while few, if any, local residents are to be seen. Streets, community centres and small parks where locals regularly met, are now deserted. A brutal reminder of the State Government’s forced removal of generations of social housing residents from the area.

NSW Minister for Planning and Housing, Anthony Roberts MP, must immediately rescind Rob Stokes’ (Affordable Rental Housing) (Short-term Rental Accommodation) 2021 SEPP. Local Councils must be mandated to enforce residential planning, zoning or approval to prevent short-term commercial letting of housing. The proliferation of these properties is a huge problem for housing affordability/availability, for the living conditions of neighbouring residents and for legitimate tourism accommodation providers.


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