Housing Crisis Hits Temora Shire

Published on 25 July 2022


“The impacts of a housing crisis in Temora Shire will have disastrous effects on the wider community,” warns Temora Shire Mayor, Rick Firman.

In what used to be a ‘city’ problem, lack of housing stock, vacant homes and less rooms for rent are leaving local residents with extremely limited options for safe housing in the shire.

“We have more people than available housing,” said Mayor Firman. “The cost of living and availability of suitable housing is a real concern. Real estates are working hard to assist all clients to find suitable housing, but we have some residents couch surfing and even sleeping in tents. We have residents who are homeless in Temora Shire, and that causes great concern to Council,” he said.

“I appeal to all our citizens who may be able to offer solutions to this critical issue, to do what they can,” said Mayor Firman. “We have a strong history of looking after each other, showing care and concern for the welfare of others, and that sentiment is needed now more than ever.”

“We have residents living alone who may be able to rent out rooms in their homes,” he said. “Having a boarder in your home may be a very positive experience for some residents.”

Temora Shire Council is seeking help from our community to address this issue.

“According to the 2021 Census data, up to 12.9% of homes are sitting vacant that owners could be offering to potential renters, and Council is investigating that claim closely to determine how accurate that figure is,” he said.

Future housing developments, including an affordable housing development commissioned by Council, will endeavour to improve availability in the future, but does not solve the problem at hand right now.

“Housing affordability and availability is arguably the most pressing issue right now affecting communities across the state,” said Economic Development Manager, Craig Sinclair. “The problem is not isolated to Temora, but we can’t wait for someone else to fix the problem. It’s a matter of urgency,” he pressed.

Council is appealing to residents who may have vacant properties or room in their own homes to consider offering housing options to the growing number of displaced residents in our community.

“We are appealing to property owners to seriously consider putting their vacant homes on the rental market,” said Mr Sinclair.

“The Census also tells us that the average number of people per household is 2.6 and the average number of bedrooms per dwelling is 3.2. This suggests we have more large homes than small, and that many people are living in dwellings larger than their needs,” he said. “Obviously, there is no easy fix, but it is certainly something to consider.”

It is feared that the ongoing effects of a housing shortage will have significant impacts on other areas.

“The flow-on effects could mean staff shortages and difficulty recruiting for local businesses and industries. Childcare and education could be considerably impacted, and our health services will undoubtably be affected,” he said.

In an effort to address this issue, Temora Shire Council will be holding a Boom Time Forum as part of Local Government Week.

“The forum is an opportunity for residents to learn about projects and opportunities that will impact the economic development of our shire,” said Mr Sinclair.

While the Boom Time Forum will highlight the positive things going on in the region, it is impossible to overlook the urgency of the housing crisis.

“We urge any members of the community who may be able to ease the burden on the housing market to get in contact with us at Council on 6980 1100. We are more than happy to offer assistance and guidance through the process of offering accommodation,” he said. “Alternatively, the real estate agents would love to hear from potential landlords.”

The Boom Time Forum will be held at Temora Memorial Town Hall Supper Room on Tuesday 2nd August, 2022 at 5.30pm. All residents are welcome.