People who own holiday homes in bushfire-affected communities are being encouraged to list them with local real estate agents for rent, to increase the supply of accommodation available for those who have lost everything.
Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services Gareth Ward said the NSW Government can provide financial assistance through rental bond loans and advance rent payments to help get people into suitable accommodation.
“If you own a property in a bushfire-affected area that isn’t being used right now, it could be providing a family with a safe and secure place to stay in their time of need,” Mr Ward said.
“We’re encouraging home owners to lend a helping hand and list their property for rent, so that the NSW Government can assist people into secure accommodation.”
The NSW Government’s Bushfire Housing Assistance Service has received hundreds of calls from people impacted by the State’s bushfires. Our dedicated Bushfire Housing Assistance Response Team is also on the ground, linking people with housing options and helping them plan for future housing needs.
Member for Bega Andrew Constance said the south coast is a popular tourist destination, which includes an abundance of homes owned by people living and working in places like Canberra or Sydney.
“Tragically, we’ve lost hundreds of homes across our region. They are sleeping in hotels, motels, with family and friends, in tents, caravans and sheds. It’s a crisis as they plan for their futures,” Mr Constance said.
“If more homes are listed with real estate agents for rent, the NSW Government can actively work to link those properties with people who have lost their home.”
People who are in need of housing assistance as a result of the bushfires can call the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444 or visit a local Department of Communities and Justice Housing office.
For more information, visit www.dcj.nsw.gov.au/families-and-communities/bushfire-housing-assistance-service/.