The federal opposition is urging the newly formed national cabinet and banks to consider measures to protect mortgage-holders and tenants feeling the strain from COVID-19.
The shadow minister for housing and homelessness, Jason Clare MP, has said, “No one should lose their home because they, or their family, are affected by the virus.”
Labor is now urging the national cabinet and banks to “immediately develop and implement a plan to help ensure people don’t lose the home they own or rent because of the virus”.
The federal opposition has called for the government and financial services industry to consider some of the measures being implemented overseas – inclusive of mortgage holidays and eviction moratoriums.
Mr Clare stated that more Australians are behind in their mortgage repayments today than at any time since the global financial crisis, and rental stress is through the roof.
“This crisis will make this worse.”
Labor is also calling for the government to take action to make sure no one has their power, water, gas or phone cut off due to being unable to pay bills.
The call comes as the UK and US governments overnight introduced measures to protect mortgage-holders from foreclosure and tenants from eviction.
“We should do the same,” Mr Clare considered.
He said a practical plan to combat the situation in Australia needs to be developed as quickly as possible.
The UK government is introducing emergency legislation to ensure renters affected by the coronavirus cannot be forced out of their homes – with a three-month stay period preventing landlords from starting proceedings immediately.
It also announced a three-month mortgage payment holiday for home owners unable to keep up repayments due to the virus.
This will also be extended to landlords whose tenants are experiencing financial difficulties.
Over in the United States, President Donald Trump announced a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions for single family home owners with Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages for the next 60 days.