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The Trajectory towards Marginality: How do Older Australians find themselves Dependent on the Private Rental Market?

  • Alan Morris (a1)

For older Australians being dependent on the private rental market is usually associated with serious financial hardship and insecurity. The article examines the housing careers of older Australians who are dependent on the private rental market. After sketching the policy context, it uses in-depth interviews and a biographical approach to explore their trajectory into the private rental market. Divorce, separation and widowhood were key factors, especially for women, as were poor employment histories and ill-health. The crucial factor was an inability to access social housing. The neglect of this housing tenure has meant that supply is very limited and it is reserved primarily for people with complex needs.

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D. Clapham (2002) ‘Housing pathways: a post-modern analytical framework’, Housing, Theory and Society, 19, 2, 5768.

D. Faulkner (2007) ‘The older population and changing housing careers: implications for housing provision’, Australasian Journal on Ageing, 26, 4, 152–6.

J. Kemeny (1977) ‘A political sociology of home ownership in Australia’, Journal of Sociology, 13, 1, 4752.

H. Kendig (1984) ‘Housing careers, life cycle and the residential market: implications for the housing market’, Urban Studies, 21, 3, 271–83.

A. Morris (2009a) ‘Living on the margins: comparing older private renters and older public housing tenants in Sydney, Australia’, Housing Studies, 24, 5, 697711.

A. Sixsmith and J. Sixsmith (2008) ‘Ageing in place in the United Kingdom’, Ageing International, 32, 3, 219–35.

J. Yates and B. Bradbury (2010) ‘Home ownership as a (crumbling) fourth pillar of social insurance in Australia‘, Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 25, 2, 193211.

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Social Policy and Society
  • ISSN: 1474-7464
  • EISSN: 1475-3073
  • URL: /core/journals/social-policy-and-society
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