The HomeBuilder Scheme Should Be About Housing The Homeless, Not Funding The Rich

This is stupid, tone-deaf and a total rort.

The government unveiled its new $25,000 HomeBuilder grant today to single or couple home-owners so they can renovate their houses in an effort to curb the recession we’ve just entered into. You can check out an explainer for details here, but basically it’s a grant for rich people to make their homes fancier.

The HomeBuilder grant is going to cost tax payers an estimated $688 million dollars, and only singles who earn up to $150,000 or couples who earn up to $200,000 are eligible for it – but, the renovation they want has to cost between $150,000 to $750,000. So basically, to qualify you need to already have a spare $150,000 lying around.

The justification for giving a bunch of wealthy people money to vamp up their homes is that it’ll create jobs for tradies, but I think this is pretty bullshit. There are a myriad of ways this $688m could have been used to preserve jobs, and this ain’t one of them. Naturally, people are pissed off about this blatant attempt to funnel money into wealthy middle class Australia.

I mean, even The Australian is angry.

The real injustice here though is how much money our government is willing to give rich people, and how little they want to help the vulnerable. When we enter a recession, poor people are far more in need of government financial support than people earning $150k a year.

We are currently living in a country where we have firefighters left homeless after last season’s devastating bushfires, we have a housing crisis with over 3 million Australians living under the poverty line, and mass unemployment due to coronavirus.

As Senator Jordan Steele-John points out, why couldn’t we instead give $25,000 to people who have disabilities and need more accessible housing, so they can use it to renovate their homes to accommodate their needs better?

You know what else would give tradies jobs and be socially useful? Re-building burnt down homes from the fires, or building more social housing. Imagine if the $688 million worth of tax payer money wasn’t going into rich people’s homes, but was used to create community housing for the 100,000 homeless people in this country?

We are in a housing crisis. 1 in 200 Australians are homeless right now, and Scott Morrison wants to give the rich even more money, while refusing to raise welfare payments or create housing for the vulnerable. This government’s priorities have never been clearer and frankly, it’s sickening.

Image Sources: Twitter

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