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Landlord defends Christmas rent increase by $67 a week despite recognizing tenant ‘can't afford' it

Landlord defends Christmas rent increase by $67 a week despite recognizing tenant ‘can't afford' it

The landlord pointed out she had a family of her own to keep in mind as costs increase

A landlord in Australia has defended her decision to increase the rent on one of her properties by $67 a week, even though it means the tenant can't afford it.

The landlord sparked mixed responses after she shared her 'predicament' online earlier this month, explaining that her own costs had gone up, therefore she needed to increase her rent prices.

The property in question is being rented by a single mom with two kids in Perth, and the landlord acknowledged the mom will 'probably struggle' to pay the rent if it goes up.

After speaking with her property manager, the landlord learned that an AU $100 ($67) per week increase was 'reasonable', and that the mom would still be paying under market value for the property.

However, when she decided just before Christmas to go through with her plans, she was told the mom 'wouldn’t be able to feed her kids and she will be in severe financial difficulty'.

The landlord considered leaving the rent the same and paying the difference out of her own pocket, but she ultimately decided to go through with the increase.

She admitted it was a tough decision, but added: "The rent is still AU $30-$40 [US $20-$26] per under market value. Now I’m learning you can’t mix emotions with business."

The landlord learned the mom couldn't afford the price increase.
Getty Stock Photo

Though the landlord did what she felt she had to do, she was met with backlash online from viewers who slammed her decision.

"Jesus, I cannot imagine increasing a rent by $100 a week - that would ruin anyone, let alone a single mum," one person wrote, adding: "What are you thinking of? Have some ethics."

Other viewers were more understanding of the landlord's decision, with one pointing out she was 'not running a charity'.

After seeing the mixed responses, the landlord spoke to to explain her decision, saying: “I don’t think that I’m being greedy, because being overly compassionate has put me in this situation in the first place."

“I didn’t increase the rent much last year, to be kind. Now I’m in a position where it looks like it’s a hefty increase.”

The landlord discussed the increase with her property manager.

The landlord went on to point out that her own costs, including insurance and land tax, are increasing, though she is still 'struggling' with the decision to increase the rent, which would officially go ahead after the lease expires in January.

She said: “I want to help people, but how far can I go out of my own pocket to help people without making myself have to work more.

"How much should I keep subsidising when I have a family of my own?"

The landlord decided to share her video to spark a conversation about the housing crisis, and though she noted it's 'become landlords versus renters', she wants the government to take further action to help those who are struggling.

"I think there needs to be a solution to work together to make sure landlords are being fair and tenants are looked after to fix the housing crisis," she said.

"The government kind of doesn’t want to take the blame. It [says] it’s the landlord’s problem, but I don’t see how it’s kind of my fault that my costs have gone up, because of decisions that are outside of my control.”

Featured Image Credit: X/@ausstockchick

Topics: Australia, Money, Twitter, Viral