Will It Happen Here?: Does the Philippines Have the Same Issue as Australia’s Looming Housing Crisis?

Joanna Marie Santos     May 24, 2023

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Will It Happen Here?: Does the Philippines Have the Same Issue as Australia’s Looming Housing Crisis?

Currently, Australia is experiencing one of the worst housing crises experienced by the country in the 21st century. Australia’s housing crisis has been going on for a while, but what makes that issue far worse is that the problem came almost directly after a steady improvement in housing, resulting in almost a quick reverse that pressed the issue even more to the masses. A quick rise in property prices partnered with a significant dip in the availability of affordable housing options has rendered many Australians homeless and without the prospect of owning a safe place to live any time soon. 

In the Philippines, we have been suffering a crisis of homelessness for a very long time. The issue has been passed on from one administration to another, with none quite capable of answering the growing need of Filipinos for access to affordable and safe housing despite every single regime’s promise of eradicating the persistent crisis. However, it is important to note that the seemingly permanent issue is not the sole responsibility of the government, although the majority of it is. Private sectors also have a significant role to play in contributing to the availability of affordable housing, yet the progress is slow despite the steady growth of the economy of the country. 


The Rise Of Homelessness In Australia And The Current State Of The Philippines’ Housing Crisis

The ongoing housing crisis in the Philippines and Australia can not be underestimated. Looking at the future with bleak eyes can paint Australia’s housing crisis as falling too close to the current situation of the Philippines. In the Philippines, the number of homeless people is not by the thousand, but by the millions — 4.5 million Filipinos, to be exact, including people with disabilities and children. This issue not only raises the question of what the government is doing to answer the homelessness problem, but also what it is doing to keep people out of homelessness. 

Currently, the administration’s promises to fix this housing issue are not supported by the resources that they are actually providing. The 2023 proposed budget of P95.89 billion pesos to provide housing for the country’s homeless population was drastically slashed to P3.952 billion, providing the prospect of home ownership to only 17 percent of the homeless population. In Australia, people are seeing the same issue albeit a change in severity. While the number of homeless people in Australia is reported to be around 122,000 people any given night, the housing crisis negatively affects the people who could previously afford house rent to suddenly lose this capability.


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While both countries are experiencing issues in housing, it is very important to note that there are a number of other factors that influence the consistency of homelessness in the Philippines with a severity that is only exclusive to the Philippines. Insufficiency of regional and national government efforts and initiatives, lack of participation by private sectors, and, of course, the significant gap between the rich and the poor are just a few of the points that contribute to the country’s housing crisis. However, Australia’s housing crisis is also producing a drastic plunge in the availability of affordable housing, resulting in many hopeful citizens losing their chances of affording a property. The prediction is realistic but desperate. If the trend continues, many people will be taken advantage of and will be forced to pay higher prices for properties with lower value.


The Hope To Alleviate The Housing Crisis

Despite the current housing situation of both countries, the future is not set in stone yet. While there is still uncertainty in the development of the housing sectors in the Philippines and Australia, efforts are being made by both countries, and multiple solutions are being developed in hopes of answering the different facets that contribute to the issue. Poverty, fluctuating levels of supply and demand, and the regulation of property prices are some of the most pressing matters that need to be faced. 

In the Philippines, millions of Filipinos continue to struggle with homelessness. In Australia, the issue is becoming increasingly alarming. While administrations in both countries make consistent attempts to alleviate the situation, there are still plenty of things to be managed before both countries can see the light at the end of the tunnel. As of now, both countries can consider the efforts of both governments, as well as strive to create better solutions to hopefully provide a safe and comfortable future for their citizens, which is hopefully under a roof behind secure doors. 


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  • Mission Australia (n.d.) Homelessness in Australia Statistics. Retrieved from: https://www.missionaustralia.com.au/what-we-do/ending-homelessness/homelessness-in-australia-statistics
  • Verrender, I. (2 May 2023) There is a perfect storm brewing for the housing market and it could make buying your own home a pipedream. ABC News. Retrieved from: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-05-02/housing-affordability-risks-being-out-of-reach-amid-crisis/102289282
  • Torres, S.A. (21 October 2022) Philippine housing backlog may reach 10 million by end of Marcos admin: DHSUD exec. ABS-CBN News. Retrieved from: https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/21/22/ph-housing-backlog-may-hit-10m-in-by-end-of-marcos-admin-official

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