Young people today, eh?

Ah yes – younger Australians, already badly screwed over on housing, should now further contribute to the boomers’ hold on the nation’s wealth by funding their tax cuts.

I love it when older people complain about the young having it too easy.

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103 responses to “Young people today, eh?

  1. Northern Exposure

    I’m going to have to sell my ipod to buy catfood!

  2. “I love it when older people complain about the young having it too easy.”

    Yes, and as I age I vow not to do it myself or make the asinine statement that ‘music was better in my day”

  3. In my day …..

  4. It’s the young people’s own fault for not being part of a “boom” generation. Why do you think their parents had fewer kids than their parents, eh?

  5. As a boomer I agree things are a lot tougher in many respects today than they were ‘in my day’.
    Housing is a good example, there are others.

    But it is a mistake to blame such on an age group.

    ‘The powers that be’, those that have greater influence in determining public policy than others are not directed only by or only on behalf of one age group but, strangely enough, by and for the powers that be.
    And they may cover a range of age cohorts.

    By focusing on one age group as the only culprits in creating undesirable social conditions you do not identify those that are really responsible.
    If you check out those that are responsible for the housing crisis you will find several factors that are operating and age will be a minor aspect.

    Blame them.

    I get upset by the blaming of ‘boomers’ for the following reasons:
    -I’m one.
    -I don’t do the ‘In my day …” trick [the half line above was a joke written before I saw the previous comment].
    -Boomers can be victims of decisions by the ‘powers that be’ as well as others.
    Many are in the same boat as the ‘kids’. Not all boomers are rich well housed or belong to the ‘powers that be’].
    -Despite being a ‘boomer’ I support policies [or at the very least putting such on the agenda] that
    would rectify the housing crisis eg more and better [important!] public housing, more and better public transport, consider increasing capital gains taxes, consider cutting negative gearing, and others that I can’t think of off the top of my head.
    Put them on the table and I;ll think about them and possibly/probably agree.

    When you blame the ‘boomers’ for the housing crisis [and whatever else] you [ and this is a generic ‘you’ of course] are playing the same game as those boomers who blame the kids of today for having it good – as beautifully described by Monty Python.

    OK?

  6. Northern Exposure

    I’d blame the politicians who pander to the boomers more than the boomers themselves. There are ALOT of them, alot of votes to reap. Boomers wouldnt say no to some nice tax breaks, who would say no to a tax break?

    I would, come to think of it, if it meant that me and other people my age could have buckleys at being able to buy a house or free tertiary education.

  7. Likewise.

    HD – as NE says, I blame the politicians who are pandering to those perceived boomer sensitivities. And those boomers who give the politicians the idea that they’re that selfish.

  8. the ageing population “crisis” boogieman comes out again…

    maybe i’m jaded, but when i hear a politician talking about raises taxes now so they can balance the budget *in 2050*…. i call bullshit

  9. Northern Exposure

    Why don’t the govts pander to future voters? Surely they know that one day we’re going to go “Hey! We want to buy a house and you clearly dont want us to buy one!” If the greens could come up with a solution to this we really might end up with more greens in parliament.

  10. Northern Exposure

    Karl – Tax BREAK

  11. “While older people look to be in line for a tax break, other Australians appear to be facing higher rates to boost Government coffers, with Dr Henry warning yesterday that revenues will need to rise.”

  12. “Generally older people demand a lot more from governments, especially in health and aged care services than younger Australians,” he said.

    “It would be prudent to plan on the basis that the tax system will, over time, have to generate revenues to meet substantially larger fiscal costs.”

  13. Northern Exposure

    The possible benefits of the tax break could encourage more retirees to get into the part-time jobs market, and would probably wash out any possible income loss to the govt.

    If it does mean a tax increase, on anyone, expect to see this next year not this year 😀

    However, point taken karl

  14. yeh the ostensible purpose of the article was to inflame a bit of “old vs young” argument, a sham debate

    … but the real message was to soften you up for higher taxes to “fund the oldies” (who’ll have to be self funded by 2050 anyway)

  15. Northern Exposure

    Yeah those bloody future…hey wait a minute thats me.

    They reeeeally dont like us do they?

  16. The most obvious solution is to tax superannuation of those over 60.

    Why should someone receive a pension from their superannuation fund of $50-$100k tax free with the income on assets supporting that pension being tax free in their fund?

    I can’t believe that the tax free farce was introduced in the first place. Not with the ageing, healthy population. 60 isn’t what it once was and people should keep on working for the challenge and stimulation (although this might be at a lesser degree then in their 50s.

  17. Northern Exposure

    Go Sec. Hillary!! If she could speak out specifically against the Conroy filter we’d be set.

  18. The real solution is to reduce taxes for everybody. Taxes are a disincentive for everyone to work. Families with kids are often little better off from having one or more parents who work, so its not just the oldies who need incentives.

    However, I don’t understand when the author of this blog complaining about higher taxes. If there’s one theme I have picked up on reading this blog over the years, it is that its author believes in greater government expenditure – on health, education, public transport, welfare etc – which obviously needs to be funded by higher taxes.

  19. Ugh, conservatives and their freaky taxcutphillia. It’s like a religion for them.

    I imagine Leon’s solution to pretty much every problem in his life would be tax cuts. “Uh oh, I’ve spilled red wine on the carpet. If only someone would give me a tax cut!”

    And Leon, the “author of this blog” isn’t complaining about higher taxes. He’s objecting to tax cuts for the people who own most of the country’s wealth, funded by shifting the burden to younger people. PEOPLE LIKE YOU.

  20. I have to say that I feel for the baby boomers. They simply played by the rules of the day and now they get shelacked at every turn. I don’t want to keep working past 65 currently – if I change my mind so be it but I think 45 years of employment is quite enough thank you.

    And why is a government that has changed superannuation laws to make it more expensive to salary sacrifice large amounts into super (you know, the super that funds peoples retirements and stops them from relying on government pensions) suddenly woken up to this particular issue. I salary sacrifice the precise amount before I get the tax rate raised above 15%. I am under no illusions that living on the old age pension is an unsustainable action. But no, we get complaints that “the rich” are avoiding tax by putting their funds into super. Roundabout argument.

    I am sure that future generations will also slag off our generation for getting it too easy. I think the boomer generation has given this country a lot and we owe our lifestyles to them.

  21. Ugh, conservatives and their freaky taxcutphillia. It’s like a religion for them.

    Yep, and for all the rightwingers demanding tax cuts, not one of them argue for corresponding cuts in government expenditure, especially when it comes to the oldies. At the end of the day tax cuts aren’t just magically pulled out of thin air, they need to be paid for.

    Brian Toohey’s written some terrific stuff about the taxpayer-funded boon to self-funded retirees that began under Howard and has shown no sign of abatement under Labor. Leon’s tax cuts, without abolishing this largesse would simply drive our budget deeper into deficit.

  22. I would expect that somebody will eventually challenge such a thing. Differential tax rates based on age should, I expect, be illegal. There are various anti-discrimination acts.

  23. “Leon’s tax cuts, without abolishing this largesse would simply drive our budget deeper into deficit.”

    Which can be achieved by cutting government expenditure!

    I wish it was enshrined in our constitution that it would be illegal for governments to go into debt. After all, it isn’t the government thats in for the hock, all Aussie taxpayers are.

    I find the notion that the government is able to decide how to spend my money better than I can offensive. Tax is a requirement, but it is very easy to spend others money without the respect is deserves. Victoria’s current ad campaign involving the government telling us how good they are is a classic case in point. The fact that it has become normal for governments to piss away funds in this regard speaks volumes about the lagresse with taxpayer funds.

  24. Which can be achieved by cutting government expenditure!

    Exactly. And what better place to start than the largesse given to self-funded retirees?

  25. “I wish it was enshrined in our constitution that it would be illegal for governments to go into debt.”

    ? So in a crisis, say a war we’d have to lose if it meant the govt went into debt? Madness.

    “I find the notion that the government is able to decide how to spend my money better than I can offensive. ”

    Politicians are pricks – fair enough, I don’t know you but I wouldn’t trust you to stump up your fair share. We could all be independent entities and just trust the free market to build and maintain infrastructure……. We’d be buggered. Nothing would get done, our innate selfishness would make sure of that.

  26. Mel Gibson, makes a similar argument cemil, claiming he could do better than the govt with the money he pays in taxes. The way he goes on you’d think he was destitute because of the taxes he pays, in fact he is still a very wealthy man. I guess he’s just greedy.

    I resent the fact that my govt uses my taxes to wage useless wars of choice, though I accept that taxation is essential if we are to have any semblance of a decent, comfortable society (something we enjoy here in Aus) ie we have to take the rough with the smooth, we get a small say every three years or so. I can live with that, the benefits far outweigh the disadvantages..

  27. “Exactly. And what better place to start than the largesse given to self-funded retirees?”

    Or the first home owners grant which basically benefits the vendor, not the purchaser who receives the grant.

  28. Northern Exposure

    Tell you what, if you agree not to use roads EVER, use only water you buy from private enterprise, only use private health insurance, and send your kids to private schools which dont recieve any money from the govt, then we’ll cut your taxes completely. Frankly we dont want wankers like you in our society. Taxes are the price you pay to live in a civilised society, the more taxation, the more services the govt will be able to provide. Not everyone can lift themselves up by their bootstraps.

  29. C’mon. Northern Exposure, we could just toss the govt and leave the free market to do everything, after all the free market has our interests at heart and don’t need to make money.

    User pays – yeah, errrrm who would pay for the prisons? Who would pay for defence? So cemil, let’s say you get your way and you’re in control of your money, how much of your salary would you earmark for prisons, you know, to pay for them?

  30. One of the things that keeps young people out of the housing market is their dedication to the consumer treadmill. Simply they chose to spend their money on techno toys and frivolous travel and they do all of this on the plastic so rather than being net savers they are eternally in debt and when it comes to buying a house that is considered to be an impediment to their lifestyle. If any “young” person was to prioritise their life so that they put the roof over their heads higher up the list than the latest X box I phone or that ski trip to New Zealand then more of them would be able to afford it.

    You forget also that it is the older generations who have built the nation and for that effort you offer no recognition and ignore the fact that when they do drop of their perches that the younger generation will actually benefit from the legacy. So as some one who has claimed in the past that he dislikes the notion of inheritance perhaps you should see the burden of supporting the “boomers” as compensation of a sort for all of that unearned wealth that yours and younger generations will eventually inherit.

  31. “Tell you what, if you agree not to use roads EVER, use only water you buy from private enterprise, only use private health insurance, and send your kids to private schools which dont recieve any money from the govt, then we’ll cut your taxes completely.”

    What about police and defence? Taxation is revolution insurance for the rich.

    “One of the things that keeps young people out of the housing market is their dedication to the consumer treadmill. “

    Um, no, it’s that it’s leapt well ahead of inflation and it doesn’t matter how hard the young person saves, an average earner on an average wage can’t buy an average house in an average suburb any more.

    And the boomers “built” the country? Really?

    An alternative view is that they squandered its natural wealth and the blessings they inherited, and left their grandchildren very little.

  32. http://www.theage.com.au/national/median-house-prices-rise-by-record-75000-20100122-mqrm.html?autostart=1,/url>

    More evidence that it’s not the young peoples fault that they have been priced out of the property market.

    Iain, you write as if the older generation didn’t waste money.

  33. Though, it’s not just the young, it’s anyone who doesn’t own their own home but has the desire to, I suppose the bulk of them would be young.

  34. Or the first home owners grant which basically benefits the vendor, not the purchaser who receives the grant.

    Or the private health insurance rebate which basically benefits private health industry, and the child care rebate, and the….

  35. “Iain, you write as if the older generation didn’t waste money.”

    An xbox is a lot cheaper than a hobby car, certainly.

  36. Jeremy – I’m a boomer and would love to know what I need to do to get my hands on the nation’s wealth. Any suggestions?

  37. Jeremy
    While my car certainly did cost more than an Xbox I spent money on that project after becoming a home-owner.so the price differential is irrelevant.
    However I bet that you trip to Europe would have cost enough to have paid the deposit on a house and how many of your age cohort have likewise splurged on expensive travel? As I suggested at least some of the barriers to home ownership are down to the spending and lifestyle decisions made by the individuals involved.
    Rob J
    I know that older people also make some appalling spending decisions but they have usually paid off the house first.

  38. Do you own a house, cyndicat?

    Iain –
    “I bet that you trip to Europe would have cost enough to have paid the deposit on a house”

    Nup. Not with today’s house prices, not even close.

  39. Nope.

  40. I doubt you’re one of the boomers these politicians are targeting, then.

  41. Which makes your generalisation all the more specious.

    And another thing: music was better in my day. If you whippersnappers think you won’t be saying the same thing in 20 years, I’ll eat my zimmer frame.

  42. Yes, your specific example entirely contradicts noting any general situation.

  43. As always you have an inner city Melbourne centric view of house prices.
    🙄
    But my point about the amount spent on travel still stands.

  44. Iain Hall is too retarded to even troll properly. Nonetheless:

    You forget also that it is the older generations who have built the nation and for that effort you offer no recognition and ignore the fact that when they do drop of their perches that the younger generation will actually benefit from the legacy.

    For everything that ‘older generations’ have built, they’ve also dismantled. See the spate of privatisations and the gradual erosion of Australia’s welfare state.

    As I suggested at least some of the barriers to home ownership are down to the spending and lifestyle decisions made by the individuals involved.

    House prices are more the result of lending practices than ‘lifestyle choices’. We should, however, acknowledge Hall’s own pecuinary virtue by opting to live in a weatherboard shed in Dogs’ Balls, QLD. I think that’s the sort of ‘lifestyle choice’ he’s thinking of, and it’s one which doesn’t involve employment.

    As always you have an inner city Melbourne centric view of house prices.

    Many outer suburbs in Melbourne and Sydney have houses routinely going for $600k or more. House prices are also similarly inflated in Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane (though not in Dogs’ Balls, QLD). If we take a modest, 5% deposit on a $600k house, we need $30k, which is more like a trip around the world than a backpacking expedition to Europe.

  45. I wish it was enshrined in our constitution that it would be illegal for governments to go into debt

    Cemil, almost every government in the world is in debt at the present time. Debt for its own sake is not
    something to be desired by governments, but there is an economic argument that periods of government debt are perfectly acceptable, as long as the budget is balanced over the course of the business cycle. (Staying in budget over the course of a year is an arbitrary length of time). Due to the structural deficit left by Howard/Costello, which was over $20 billion, the government would have had to undertake a massive round of spending cuts and/or tax hikes to stay within budget this financial year. This would probably have impacted severely on the economy at a time of global downturn, triggering severe recession.

  46. “I wish it was enshrined in our constitution that it would be illegal for governments to go into debt.”

    Just out of interest, cemil, did you ever have a mortgage?

  47. “And Leon, the “author of this blog” isn’t complaining about higher taxes. He’s objecting to tax cuts for the people who own most of the country’s wealth, funded by shifting the burden to younger people. PEOPLE LIKE YOU.”

    Jeremy, not every individual of the older generation owns a lot of wealth. In fact, I’m sure you would find that many don’t.

    Secondly, the reason why tax cuts are being proposed for this group is so that they are encouraged to continue working beyond retirement age. Not only is this better for the economy, but it also reduces the burden for the younger generations – people like YOU and ME.

    And in response to another comment, I am for cutting govt expenditure as well. I believe that the overall size of government should be smaller than it is now.

  48. “Jeremy, not every individual of the older generation owns a lot of wealth. In fact, I’m sure you would find that many don’t.”

    Duh. Who said “every individual”?

    “And in response to another comment, I am for cutting govt expenditure as well. I believe that the overall size of government should be smaller than it is now.”

    What do you say to the children of the poor, who get a second-class education due to no fault of their own?

  49. What do you say to the children of the poor, who get a second-class education due to no fault of their own?

    I think it’s telling that when asked about cutting expenditure, Leon’s desired outcome is for “smaller government” rather than more efficient government. Thus, in line with the Howard government it’s perfectly acceptable to entrench a welfare, hand-out mentality across the mainstream while consoling so-called ‘small government advocates’ by cutting funding to essential services.

    I’ve long suspected that the Howard years created a generation of people calling themselves fiscal conservatives with no real understanding of what the term actually means. Therefore we see people like Leon and Iain who seemingly have no problem with inefficient government give-aways such as the FHOG, non means tested Health Care Cards for self-funded retirees, and the private health insurance rebate, but who baulk at the thought of properly funding education, child care, public housing, sole parent benefit, and health care services to name a few.

  50. “As always you have an inner city Melbourne centric view of house prices.”

    Most people live in urban areas, in fact Australia is one of the most urbanised nations on the planet.whilst house prices in Melbourne are insane, other cities aren’t much better.

    What do you suggest? Go bush if you want to own a home?

  51. And even moving bush won’t necessarily help you. Parts of rural and regional Australia supported by commercial or resources industries – the kinds of places someone might find work – have median house prices above their capital city counterparts. In addition sea and tree change locations – the kinds of places with stable populations in order to support growing families – also have sky rocketing house prices.

    Why? Investors, making use of people like these guys who targetted housing developments in Broome, Cairns and the Gold Coast (just off the top of my head) for investors.

  52. Confessions

    Therefore we see people like Leon and Iain who seemingly have no problem with inefficient government give-aways such as the FHOG, non means tested Health Care Cards for self-funded retirees, and the private health insurance rebate, but who baulk at the thought of properly funding education, child care, public housing, sole parent benefit, and health care services to name a few.

    Actually I abhor government inefficiency more than you do which is why I have been railing against the nonsense of the so call “education revolution” not because I object to public education (because I don’t ) but because the Labor government have made a dogs breakfast of the whole thing.
    Of your list:
    FHOG……… I’m indifferent at best, but seeing it is mean to compensate for some rather horrid state taxes on real estate purchases I can see some benefit in it.
    non means tested Health Care Cards for self-funded retirees…… Ageed I see no problem with this because it really affects very few people
    private health insurance rebate nah you are wrong I don’t think that this is such a crash hot idea at all
    properly funding education Wrong again I support public education always have
    child care No again I support child car if it includes making it feasible for one parent to remain home and look after their children
    public housing No objection from me on this
    sole parent benefit No again
    health care services Another strike out Confessions I support our health system even though I object to some obvious shortcomings in its administration.

    Most people live in urban areas, in fact Australia is one of the most urbanised nations on the planet.whilst house prices in Melbourne are insane, other cities aren’t much better.

    I know that but also there are lots of very good reasons to go against the trend and chose to live outside the ratrace of the cities in this country where housing is much more reasonably priced.

  53. I might give up the rat race myself one day, but probably not, I like my job. It’s not feasible though for everybody to give up, if it were it would be utopia.

  54. Boomers are the politicians in power…it’s totally their fault

  55. Well Iain, so long as your consistent. I have (admittedly) hazy recollections of you waxing lyrical about the glory days of Howardia and what a brilliant economic manager the former member for Bennelong was – but maybe I’m getting confused with Bolt’s blog. Just out of curiosity, did you ever blog your annoyance at the wasteful and regressive structural deficits in the Costello budgets?

    child care

    Another government inefficiency courtesy of the so-called economic conservatives: child care rebate. Millions of taxpayer dollars poured into failed child care enterprises such as ABC Learning.

  56. Northern Exposure

    Just had this talk with a real live baby boomer, who actually tried to convince me buying a house was harder in his day, they’re cheaper these days, and that the average income for a normal person about 25-26 years old is 110k a year.

    Is someone slipping peyote in to their metamucil? That would explain a whole bunch of stuff.

  57. Iain Hall my God! I agree with you.

    You are right Iain, notwithstanding your hero and mentor John Howard, who couldn’t give a flying fuck about the young or the housing to rear them in.If conservatives had their way there would be no such thing as government assisted housing, or anything else to make the life of the working class any easier.

    Who could forget Whitlam bringing in Medibank?Socialized medicine was goint to roooon the country I tell ya.I remember the first 3 months of its inception about 300 Doctors got done for defrauding it .But I digress.

    I don’t know about you Iain my old man was a tradesman, of no special consequence I might add, but he had two mortgages on a 3×1.That was in the days of the old money, quids in fact.As an aside it even felt like real money then, compared to today’s monopoly script.

    But you are right Iain the young ones of today would rather have hot nails driven into their eyeballs, than give up the latest trip to Phucket or some other exotic destination. They want a plasma t.v. to be able to show movies in Darwin from Alice Springs.There are enough fast food outlets now to feed the Chinese Red Army, and still they want more.They drive cars that I could only dream of as a kid.On and on and on and on.

    I don’t know about you Iain? Our idea of a day out when I was a kid was to force my feet into my brothers shoes, put on my Sunday best with lots of holes in the elbow area, and pig out on the beach with jam sandwiches.

    Young people have never had it so good, and any talk to the contrary is the ravings of the insane.The housing problem hasn’t changed, and as you pointed out Iain only the people have.,Monty Python would love some of the comments here, No, second thoughts even they couldn’t do a skit on a parody of this magnitude.

    The young havn’t had it as good as the baby boomers, what a load shite, you can’t make this shit up.

  58. “But you are right Iain the young ones of today would rather have hot nails driven into their eyeballs, than give up the latest trip to Phucket or some other exotic destination.”

    That doesn’t exactly contradict the point that they could save all their pennies and not spend a cent, and STILL not be able to afford an average house in an average suburb.

    Housing unaffordability is a function of incomes to prices, and it’s never been worse.

  59. Jeremy

    That doesn’t exactly contradict the point that they could save all their pennies and not spend a cent, and STILL not be able to afford an average house in an average suburb.
    You ignore the fact that the “average ” house of today is so much more elaborate than it was in the day when most boomers where buying their houses.
    Never in my life time has credit been easier to get no matter how lacking in the ability to pay the loan seeker may be.When I was younger if you wanted to borrow money you actually had to convince the bank that you wanted it for a worthwhile purpose Credit cards were not a part of the economy at all.
    But more importantly the easy credit available today means that many young people are actually much more indebted than they were in my younger days, and sadly they have very little to show for it, pay excessive interest on the debt, and seem to feel no shame about having their cards maxed out. I would suggest that it is this attitude to credit and consumption that impedes young people getting into home ownership much more than the high house prices in the inner cities.

  60. Man, the excuses you lot come up with for ignoring the fact – the FACT – that house prices, when compared with income, are more unaffordable than they have EVER been in this country.

    “You ignore the fact that the “average ” house of today is so much more elaborate than it was in the day when most boomers where buying their houses.”

    Iain, a tiny unit 20km out from Melbourne is almost $400k.

    “Never in my life time has credit been easier to get no matter how lacking in the ability to pay the loan seeker may be.”

    Not a plus for young people, is it? It pushes prices up, and puts them further into debt.

    “I would suggest that it is this attitude to credit and consumption that impedes young people getting into home ownership much more than the high house prices in the inner cities.”

    And you’d be wrong. The fact that prices have increased so far ahead of incomes is by far the main problem.

  61. The sheer unmitigated arrogance of Iain Hall who says to all first home buyers out there that the reason they can’t afford to buy their first home is because they are greedy consumeristic losers who max out their credit cards buying unecessary shit they don’t need.

    I’m with GaryM: you can’t make this shit up.

  62. For God’s sake, Iain! A really crummy house in the outer suburbs of Melbourne is going to cost you $400K. As a bare minimum, your start-up costs are 5% deposit, being $20K, plus stamp duty of roughly $17,500 – all up, a touch under $40K when you factor in incidental costs.

    You can buy a lot of X-boxes with that sort of money, Iain. Or trips to Phuket, for that matter.

  63. Northern Exposure

    Only 400k? Giving them away Jezzer!

    GaryM- They want a plasma t.v. to be able to show movies in Darwin from Alice Springs.
    What?

    On credit cards, so because (you suggest) “young” people have managed to hypnotise themselves into thinking credit is monopoly money that can buy you things, they should be punished for all time by not being able to buy a house, without their credit shovel digging them into an even bigger hole? And because the houses we have today are some how…more house-ish/houseier/housetastic, that this makes sense?

    Iain, houses today are far, far more difficult to buy than they have ever been. Ever. Houses used to cost 8 years pay, these days they are 20, in some cases 30. Because of predatory banks, because of bottom feeding real estate agents and unscrupulous investment buyers, who inflate the prices way beyond what they paid for it, who leap at any kind of govt help, and cry unfair when it’s denied to them.

    There is no excuse for why houses should be so bloody expensive. Blaming “young” people isn’t good enough.

  64. I think home-owners like Iain deliberately convince themselves that housing is really not all that unaffordable and it’s only young people being profligate credit card spenders that makes it hard for them, because the alternative would be recognising that there really is a problem and the solution involves slowing the appreciation of their main asset(s).

  65. Northern Exposure

    When did the American Dream become the Australian one?

  66. Just out of interest, how does anyone propose to reduce house prices? Introduce a capital gains tax on owner-occupied housing? Abolish negative gearing? Cut immigration levels? Force state governments to release more land? Give tenants more rights thus making investment property less attractive? Raise interest rates? Depress the economy?

  67. Northern Exposure

    Abolishing Negative Gearing would be a massive help, not only to “young” people buying their first home, but the govt as well, something like 4 billion a year. Or at least save it for newly built houses, which would make sense because it would be like a real start up business, and people would build more houses, instead of nicking houses off the market from owner-occupier buyers.

    Of course the major parties will commit hari kari before they let that happen.

  68. First thing, build decent public transport infrastructure to more suburbs, so there’s more practical housing in which people can live and commute.

    Second, discourage investors from the market. Increase renters’ rights as opposed to landlords’. Apply capital gains tax on investment properties at the same rate as personal income. Consider abolishing negative-gearing.

    Raising interest rates doesn’t work – landlords just pass on the increase to tenants. Depressing the economy wouldn’t work – it’d just make those without houses even more vulnerable. Releasing more land is no use unless they build public transport infrastructure to those new suburbs.

  69. Again Iain Hall is correct, and all the rest here have done has pile on a load of words.Where is the proof home ownership is harder to get?

    The other fact is and was pointed out by Hall and glossed over was the added extras in house pricing.I have just purchased another home myself, with all the added tacked on extras it cost me an extra 40 grand.You know what I got for that? Fuck All!.

    But this isn’t just about house prices.It was about the young paying for the baby boomer’s tax cuts who according to Jeremy, have a hold on the nations wealth.

    As was pointed out earlier in this thread not all baby boomer’s live high on the hog, the state housing commission flats of every state in Australia, are full of them.That thousands of them are on medical waiting lists is not idle speculation.Some pensioners regularly eat pet food, no not Haiti, here.

    Well anyways if you all reckon its hard to own your own home now, wait till Abbott gets in, and as each day passes that nigh mare scenario could be on the cards.Because not only are the young careless with their money, most of them think they are a Toorak resident in waiting. And there is your problem, we have a new “pseudo nouveau rich” in the suburbs, and I will concede that housing may be getting out of reach for the reasons stated by Hall.But, this new crowd of working poor are the very same morons that kept voting for Howard looking for a different result.

    Of course Hall IS correct, only what he fails to tell us is, that’s how conservatives like it, the best way to manipulate people is to keep telling them, it will all be better if you let our mob screw you over instead of supposedly yours.

    But us baby boomer’s having it better than this generation is just bullshit.

  70. “Where is the proof home ownership is harder to get?”

    Sorry, are you seriously denying that house prices have not rocketed well ahead of incomes?

    “It was about the young paying for the baby boomer’s tax cuts who according to Jeremy, have a hold on the nations wealth.”

    They do.

    “As was pointed out earlier in this thread not all baby boomer’s live high on the hog”

    Obviously.

    Nonetheless, as a group, they own most of the nation’s wealth.

  71. Northern Exposure

    …Yes, all the evidence we’re provided isn’t proof. Good call.

    Since you lost 40k will you be switching from dine to snappy tom?

  72. Jeremy

    Iain, a tiny unit 20km out from Melbourne is almost $400k.

    So? Not everyone has to live that close to Melbourne.

    Not a plus for young people, is it? It pushes prices up, and puts them further into debt.

    The point is that they chose to go into debt, The prioritise immediate pleasure over securing the roof over their heads.

    Confessions

    The sheer unmitigated arrogance of Iain Hall who says to all first home buyers out there that the reason they can’t afford to buy their first home is because they are greedy consumeristic losers who max out their credit cards buying unecessary shit they don’t need.

    You misrepresent my argument, I’m not saying that anyone is a “loser” but I am saying that if you want secure tenure during your life time then you have order your priorities to make that happen young people just have to learn (just as my generation did ) that building a future requires commitment to thrift in the present.


    Jeremy

    First thing, build decent public transport infrastructure to more suburbs, so there’s more practical housing in which people can live and commute.

    You and your love of public transport 🙄 in the first instance we do not have the population density to make it viable and in the second who says that everyone has to commute into the CBD to work? Changing the way that jobs are designed to make commuting unnecessary would be a far more effective way to make housing “further out” more attractive and viable

    Second, discourage investors from the market. Increase renters’ rights as opposed to landlords’. Apply capital gains tax on investment properties at the same rate as personal income. Consider abolishing negative-gearing.

    Try being a landlord for a while and then you would change your tune about “renters rights” you only have to have one bad tenant and you would be converted!
    Gary M
    This conservative actually would like all people to have secure tenure but also to be responsible enough with their cash to pay bills before their pleasurable indulgences.

  73. What I am saying Jeremy is nothing has changed in the housing market.Not everyone gets to live in Toorak.My own daughter although not a professional admittedly, has just purchased an apartment.It is in a working class suburb of W.A.She can service the loan , still eats, and pays her bills.

    I still have a receipt for a house purchased in 1965, It cost the same in comparison at todays wage structure to service the loan.

    O/k if I concede we have all the wealth, which incidental doesn’t include my good self, a lot of what is taken for granted by this generation was fought for by mine.And if you are seriously telling me that we had it better(baby boomer’s) than todays generation you are simply wrong.

    The benifits that we all take for granted now, were not given to us by benevolent governments/employers.They, if you know anything about our history were always dragged kicking and screaming to some tribunal or other.

    This isn’t about where you were born on a calender it is about greed end of story.

  74. Iain you have made some valid points, don’t ruin it by telling me conservatives want everyone in secure tenure, unless of course its theirs.

    There whole ideology is about “What’s in it for me”to deny this salient fact borders on delusion.

    Please don’t try to indulge me in fantasy, I have read enough books about our history to know what conservatives are about.It is a shame that intelligent people like yourself get caught up in their propaganda.But you do, and that is/will always be so.

  75. You misrepresent my argument

    Really? Your argument seems to be that first home buyers can’t buy housing today, not because housing is expensive and loans harder to service but because potential buyers are too consumeristic and run up debt on their credit cards. That *is* your argument, isn’t it Iain?

  76. Northern Exposure

    Iain, a tiny unit 20km out from Melbourne is almost $400k.

    So? Not everyone has to live that close to Melbourne. –

    No, but you have to be able to get to and from work without chartering a cessna.

    The point is that they chose to go into debt, The prioritise immediate pleasure over securing the roof over their heads. –

    Every single one of them chose to be in debt. You are a font of something.

    You misrepresent my argument, I’m not saying that anyone is a “loser” but I am saying that if you want secure tenure during your life time then you have order your priorities to make that happen young people just have to learn (just as my generation did ) that building a future requires commitment to thrift in the present. –

    His point is the even the “young” people saving and scratching can’t buy houses at all.

    It would be a lovely world if employers would make it optional to work from home, but they don’t. That whole line of argument is moot. Wanker.

    Where on earth are you getting your numbers?

  77. Gary M
    I only claim that this Conservative ( Moi) wants to see everyone with secure tenure I don’t speak for all conservatives nor do I endorse those who are indifferent to the housing needs of those less fortunate. My parents never owned their house and I rented myself for many years. having been on both sides of the fence I definitely think the autonomy that you get from home ownership is well worth the effort it takes to achieve it.

  78. I agree, Iain. And what bothers me is that we’re about to have a generation where only the following groups can buy a house in commuting distance from their jobs:
    – the top 20-30% of earners;
    – those who inherit property from their parents.

    That, to me, is a massive social problem waiting to happen.

  79. GaryM: A clear difference between housing affordability in my generation and in my Boomer parents time is only dad worked while we were kids. Mum didn’t go back to work until I was 8. One salary to service the mortgage AND raise a family. All my married with kids and mortgage friends they need both incomes to make ends meet.

  80. Confessions both my parents worked to buy our first house in the fifty’s but I could be having a lend of you, Yea Right!.

    As much as Iain Hall lives in another dimension to most people, and has obviously never read a history book in his life, he makes the point that cannot be denied.Housing for the working class of which I am one, was no where near by a country mile at the standard they are now.If I wanted a bit of quiet meditation as a child of the fifties and later sixties, I had to be satisfied with the crapper.

    The people you now wax lyrical about, have toilets bigger than the bedroom I slept in as a child.

    To compare living standards notwithstanding the price of housing at todays prices, to the last generation, is to border on insanity.I am old enough to remember attending school classes with kids that had polio, and still in some rare cases rickets, so spare me the younger generation are doing it tough.

    Sure some baby boomer’s are well cashed up, and in some cases why wouldn’t they be?I mean I paid for the best education money can buy with my taxes.It should be me that’s moaning about the overpaid intellectual baby boomer wankers, who like their modern counterparts still can’t find their own arsehole with both hands.

  81. Iain your position in the broad spectrum of conservative politics is well known.Like you I have rented as well, and like you putting a roof over my family’s head came before trips to Phucket, plasma t.v’s, and getting into debt with mobile phone company’s, which incidently if I believe what I read is out of hand.

    But anyways, I too believe all and sundry should be housed, by the government if necessary.Theproblem wont be achieved by market forces.

    In my own state of W.A. mining company’s in the N.W. of the state are paying wages that I could only dream of as a tradey.I know some of them personally and in one case a worker owns four houses in Perth.The market is being captured by this reality.

  82. Iain your position in the broad spectrum of conservative politics is well known.Like you I have rented as well, and like you putting a roof over my family’s head came before trips to Phucket, plasma t.v’s, and getting into debt with mobile phone company’s, which incidentally if I believe what I read, is out of hand.

    But anyways, I too believe all and sundry should be housed, by the government if necessary.The problem wont be achieved by market forces.The sad reality is people with a conservative bent, who drive the market are greedy bastards.The U.S. experience on the prime mortgage fiasco needs no further examination here.

  83. Gary, a few points:

    1. We know that housing prices are inflated, because median house price vs average wage has soared since the 70s. There’s no argument that today’s kids have a better standard of living, but the fact is that housing has increased.

    2. The increase has occurred ahead of inflation, and is not due to any shortage per se (occupancy rates are a mere 2.6%, and the major cities don’t exactly have shanty towns). That means there is a bubble, waiting to burst, which will hurt a lot of mortgagees.

    3. If the bubble bursts, you’d have a high likelihood of the sub-prime disaster occurring here. That means more unemployment, tigher credit, etc.

    4. Until the bubble bursts, wealth and ownership of assets will continue to become concentrated in fewer hands, as increasing numbers of barred from the housing market.

    5. The relation to consumer debt (i.e. plasmas purchased via credit card) and housing prices is far from clear. Certainly, you can’t blame one on the other. What’s clear is that, on the average wage, you need two incomes and significant levels of personal debt to contemplate home ownership.

    6. The level is choice in housing is entirely illusory. In a city like Melbourne, you can either pay astronomical amounts for an inner-city place (I’m talking 15 km from the CBD) that is probably small, or needs renovating, or you pay smaller prices for a cookie-cutter house by developers in the infrastructure-free, job-free outer burbs.


  84. Jeremy

    what bothers me is that we’re about to have a generation where only the following groups can buy a house in commuting distance from their jobs:

    – the top 20-30% of earners;
    – those who inherit property from their parents.

    That, to me, is a massive social problem waiting to happen.

    The thing is you want to slate all of the fault for this situation upon the economic environment, and while that is clearly part of the equation a large part of problem is the actions on the demographic that you are championing and that is the point that I have been trying to make.
    What is really so wrong with children inheriting enough from their parents (or grand parents) to get them into owning their homes BTW?

  85. Housing for the working class of which I am one, was no where near by a country mile at the standard they are now.

    I think this argument is disingenuous. Surely most things are a huge improvement on what they used to be, but the point about housing is as a proportion of annual average salary, it’s price has sky rocketted making it (in my back of the envelope generalisations) beyond the reach of more of a percentage of the population than in generations past.

  86. And at some point I thought the Australian Social Trends used to include economic data such as house and car affordability over 30 or so years, but doesn’t seem to anymore. A pity. Unless someone more google skilled than me can find it……

  87. Confessions this debate went further than just housing.However I still maintain it is within the grasp of the ordinary folk to buy a house if they are will ing to go with out other pleasures.

    No!Not food and clothes.

    There is a whole new world of consumerism out there, and it is targeted at the folk least able to afford it.Yes housing has risen but it is still affordable, to those who can do with out a load of useless crap.

    Is it to expensive?Of course it is, but in comparison to houses in baby boomer times, it is all relative.

    If you want to blame some sod blame the wankers that keep voting in the conservative governments, and the pseudo labor governments, just like the one Rudd is running.

  88. But GaryM the argument (Iain’s argument btw) that the only reason potential first home buyers can’t get into the property market is that they are greedy consumerists who want the latest and best now is simply an over-generalisation. Yes there are people like that, but not *all* first home buyers fit Iain’s prejudice.

    By and large, the majority of first home buyers find property out of their reach because of factors outside of their control, namely:

    – price as a proportion of their annual income.
    – the cheaper housing is waaaaaay out in the boon docks making commuting to the city for work another expense to be factored into the budget. Shitty public transport is absolutely a factor in this, despite Iain’s exasperation.
    – government’s interferring in price settings: see Jeremy’s posts about CGT and policies that favour landlords over tennants.
    – the FHOG which simply inflated new housing developments esp by at least the amount of the grant.

    And yes, I will blame successive governments who continue to allow these things to persist, while tinkering about the margins doing SFA.

  89. “The thing is you want to slate all of the fault for this situation upon the economic environment, and while that is clearly part of the equation a large part of problem is the actions on the demographic that you are championing and that is the point that I have been trying to make.”

    “The actions” of the demographic are irrelevant because NO MATTER WHAT THEY DO, even if they save hard over an extended period, houses ARE STILL UNAFFORDABLE.

    Get it? I’m not objecting to housing unaffordability for spendthrifts. I’m objecting to housing unaffordability for pretty much all young Australians who don’t already own a house, save the very top earners.

    “What is really so wrong with children inheriting enough from their parents (or grand parents) to get them into owning their homes BTW?”

    A society in which only the two groups described can get a house, is not a fair one.

  90. What is really so wrong with children inheriting enough from their parents (or grand parents) to get them into owning their homes BTW?

    There is nothing wrong with that iain, but it’s hardly a solution to home affordabilty for the mainstream is it?

  91. Confessions unless there are some firm statistics how do not ‘Generalize’ ? Look I’m no fan of Iain Hall, he has burnt any bridges on most blogs with his uber ultra right wing rhetoric.However the points he made cannot be dismissed because of who he is, even Hall is right(pardon the pun)some of the time.

    This thread was more than about housing, it was creeping along the lines, not the first time here I might add of blaming the baby boomer’s for the state of the economy and various shades of the clap.There was no clarification until I mentioned pensioners in housing commission flats, and dog food.Jeremy’s retort was ‘ obviously!’. If one wants to grab some fuckers nuts, they had better qualify what they are squeezing them for.

    If this post had qualified the remarks with uber right wing fascist baby boomer bastards, not only have all the wealth, control all the wealth, and couldn’t give a monkeys if people starve, get sick, or indeed live under bridges because of their tinkering with the social welfare system,well I might just agree with the analysis.

    B

  92. Confessions unless there are some firm statistics how do not ‘Generalize’ ? Look I’m no fan of Iain Hall, he has burnt any bridges on most blogs with his uber ultra right wing rhetoric.However the points he made cannot be dismissed because of who he is, even Hall is right(pardon the pun)some of the time.

    This thread was more than about housing, it was creeping along the lines, not the first time here I might add of blaming the baby boomer’s for the state of the economy and various shades of the clap.There was no clarification until I mentioned pensioners in housing commission flats, and dog food.Jeremy’s retort was ‘ obviously!’. If one wants to grab some fuckers nuts, they had better qualify what they are squeezing them for.

    If this post had qualified the remarks with uber right wing fascist baby boomer bastards, not only have all the wealth, control all the wealth, and couldn’t give a monkeys if people starve, get sick, or indeed live under bridges because of their tinkering with the social welfare system,well I might just agree with the analysis.

    But back to housing lets see the statistics.

  93. “Just out of interest, cemil, did you ever have a mortgage?”

    No, I never get into debt for anything. That’s a personal decision. But if I did then I, as an individual, would be responsible for that debt for life unless I filed for bankruptcy. A government going into debt could be voted out at the next election and have no responsibility for it’s debt whatsoever – but the taxpayers are in for it just the same.

    All the more, there is no such thing as “Structual debt” – a government, on finding itself out of money, should do what everyone (who is responsible) does and only spend what they have on the essentials. If no arts grants go out that year – so be it!

  94. Confessions unless there are some firm statistics how do not ‘Generalize’ ?

    There are firm statistics available through the ABS as my previous post alludes. I just can’t find it.

    And this poor bugger me baby boomer bastard schtick is boring, irrelevent and decidedly rightwing. Please stop.

  95. Is it to expensive?Of course it is, but in comparison to houses in baby boomer times, it is all relative.

    It’s not relative, it’s roughly twice as dear compared to the 70s. Have a look at the data:

    http://www.debtdeflation.com/blogs/2010/01/12/how-expensive-is-housing/

    House prices are 2.5 times higher than they were in 1986 (in real terms). Australia’s asset bubble is higher than those of the US and UK (pre-GFC).

  96. O/K THR you have conviced me, I am wrong!

    So what do we do about it? Serious.

  97. I made some suggestions above, Gary. And I just realised I didn’t respond to Iain’s complaints about them, so I’ll do that now.

    “So? Not everyone has to live that close to Melbourne.”
    Many do. It’s unaffordable.

    “The point is that they chose to go into debt, The prioritise immediate pleasure over securing the roof over their heads.”
    Um, no – the point is that if they want to own a house they have to go HUGELY into debt now. The banks lending too much money means that prices OF HOUSES rise to match, and first home buyers are pretty much forced to owe a bank a ludicrous amount of money. If they say “no”, then – no house. We’re not talking about “immediate pleasure”, we’re talking about BUYING A HOUSE.

    “You and your love of public transport 🙄 in the first instance we do not have the population density to make it viable and in the second who says that everyone has to commute into the CBD to work?”
    Iain, there’s a reason the houses are so expensive along the train lines in Melbourne. And the population density is perfectly adequate for public transport throughout the city – it’s not like Doncaster is less populous than Ringwood, but they’ve got no train.

    And many people do have to commute to the CBD to work. Many jobs can’t be done from home.

    “Try being a landlord for a while and then you would change your tune about “renters rights” you only have to have one bad tenant and you would be converted!”

    But that’s the point. It’s TOO tempting for landlords at the moment. We SHOULD be discouraging them. Also, while we are pretty much forcing people to rent, they should have a bit more security. A renter doesn’t know if they’re going to be asked to leave in three months. They can’t put up any permanent fixtures at home, they have to ask permission to have pets etc.

    If we’re going to force people to stay renters indefinitely, then we should give them more rights as to their homes.

    And if landlords don’t like it, they can sell out and let an actual home-owner buy the property.

  98. Jeremy I take on board your points, I would like to see home ownership for everyone that obviously wants it.Public transport in Perth is probably the best in Australia, and getting to our outer suburbs is not a problem.

    Iain Hall was making the point, and I agree young people seem to spend more money than I did or any of my contemporaries.However having said that, anything Hall says comes from his position as a very confused conservative.I say confused because his very life style is not really acceptable to his own ideology.

  99. Northern Exposure

    What’s how we seemingly spen money got to do with the price of tea in china? The bloody houses are still too expensive! You think the house prices have been going up because we buy iphones?

  100. To extend on Ian and GaryM’s point – I am almost (and I mean a couple of weeks away) in the position to purchase a house with case. My wife and I have always had a policy of saving 75% of our wages in order to save up for a house. When we were on 75K together this was hard. The early noughties were tough – we were early 20’s and watching our mates live it up. As our expertise and quals increased we kept our 75% rule – again we had the shittest TV, lounge, whitegoods and crockery in our friends circle – all whilst they were living it up. Now we are on 250K together and still abide by our 75% rule. Easier yes, but fuck it took a lot of sacrifice to get there – we only got our new flat screen TV in the last 2 years. Terrible I know.

    Now, we are waiting the housing market to drop to avoid over paying. Yeah it sucks, but unfortunantly we will probably get our first house from some over-morgaged idiot who didn’t factor in rate rises. Probably in the same boat as all my mates – boo hoo.

  101. With cash I meant….

  102. Lovely Protestant ethic of sacrifice, Cemil, but what the hell does it have to do with houses being over-priced? If your point is that those in their twenties and thirties today spend more cash on consumption, you may be correct, but if anything this ought to be reducing the cost of housing, as it leaves less money for deposit, mortgage, etc. Basically, the cost of housing is in no way caused by young people buying ipods or flat screens or whatever. And sure, you can simply exhort everybody to be thrifty, but you now have to be 2.5 times more thrifty than an Australian a generation or two ago.
    Added to that is the fact that many of the options for housing are simply hopeless. There are tiny flats in the inner-city for those (most of us) who aren’t rich. There’s the infrastructure- and job-free outer burbs, or you’ve got relatively cheap housing in a bunch of country towns that are fighting social decay.

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