The staggering rise in electricity prices over the past few years has been the single-biggest cost of living issue for average families trying to bring up kids and get into the housing market. The impact of these price rises, and the anger they have generated, has been seriously underestimated both by governments trying to remain in power and oppositions trying to win office.
The trickle-down effect of this explosion in the cost of living has not yet been fully examined. As one example, there were figures out on the weekend showing that the rate of home ownership in Australia had fallen from 71.4 per cent to 69.5 per cent, in defiance of trends across the OECD. You could validly speculate as to how many Australians who would love to shift from renting to owning are so tied up paying inflated bills that they simply can’t get a deposit together.
State governments have tried to quarantine themselves from any responsibility for the spiral, arguing that price rises are out of their hands and the result of external factors. Oppositions have been sluggish to make governments own the problem.
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