Housing allowances and the restructuring of the Australian welfare state

Kath Hulse

in Housing allowances in comparative perspective

Published by Policy Press

Published in print July 2007 | ISBN: 9781861347541
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447302506 | DOI:
Housing allowances and the restructuring of the Australian welfare state

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Housing allowances have become increasingly important in Australia since the early 1980s, both in terms of the number of households assisted and government expenditure. Two different types of housing allowances developed gradually and incrementally within the housing assistance and income support systems. Housing allowances are specific to either the public or private rental sectors and are the product of considerable dualism in rental market structuring. This chapter traces the development of both types of housing allowances and examines their role, design and impacts. It raises a number of current policy debates, including prospects for integration of the two housing allowance schemes, the implications of ‘welfare-to-work’ policies, the role of housing allowances in developing the not-for-profit housing sector, and issues associated with designing housing allowances for a large country with significant differences in housing sub-markets.

Keywords: Australia; housing assistance; income support systems; rental market; housing allowance schemes; housing policy

Chapter.  9437 words. 

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