Investors offer novel solution to SE Queensland’s potential retirement problem

A potential retirement affordability problem might be building in one of the key Queensland investment hotspots, and one expert has a unique way to address and solve it.

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Ian Ugarte founder of affordable housing champion, Small is the New Big, estimates that by 2026 one in three people in south-east Queensland is going to be over the age of 70, and living on $399 or less a week.

“Where it has the most effect is in places like the Gold Coast where you have a huge ageing community, and is very unaffordable for specifically the over 70s,” he said.

“And so, effectively when the minimum rental in an area is $300 we've got this whole age community that are not going be able to afford to live. They're not going to be able to retire.

“They're in a position of stress on a daily basis, and that's going to affect their heath, and ultimately affect other areas of their life.”


Mr Ugarte said investors can help by creating novel living environments that can help with more affordable housing.

“So what we do is make people aware that the investment strategy of creating communities within the same house, not only creates affordable outcomes, it creates a sense of belonging.

“It gets through to the sense of loneliness, it reduces stress, reduces anxiety.”

He said it also affects the government in a positive way — by default.

“Because the government no longer has to provide housing at the rate that they are providing it because the investor market has stepped in.

“And of course, the biggest benefit is that they are going get an investment return that is much greater than any other standard residential property, and usually better than commercial.

“So, there's a definite need for the entire investment market to work towards outcomes, and putting themselves in a place to help sell, help others at the same time.”

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