High living costs blamed for crowded houses

The high cost of living in Australia has been partially blamed for the number of crowded houses across the country.

According to figures provided by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, people are increasingly looking to move in with their friends, family or even strangers in order to reduce the burden on their finances.

News Limited reports that the number of Australian households containing three or more families went up from just 29,649 in 2006 to 48,507 last year – a rise of 64 per cent.

With the price of everyday essentials such as food, power and fuel all rising drastically in recent years, many Aussies have had to take urgent action in order to make ends meet.

As well as raiding their savings accounts, people have clearly had to alter their lifestyles to cope with the increasing demand on their finances.

A recent study conducted by Mercer showed just how expensive it has become to live down under.

The company's Worldwide Cost of Living Survey 2012 indicated that Sydney is the eleventh most costly place to reside on the planet – up from fourteenth in March 2011.

Melbourne and Perth were included in the top 20, while Canberra, Brisbane and Adelaide also featured in the top 50.

Aside from the inflated price of everyday items and services, houses have also become increasingly unaffordable for property hunters in Australia and people have had no choice but to move into cramped shared properties.

Campaign manager for Australians for Affordable Housing Sarah Toohey told the news provider that incomes have not risen at the same pace as living costs in the past few years.

"We hear of families with young children moving back in with their parents, or staying temporarily with other family members, sleeping on the floor, because they can't find an affordable place to rent," she was quoted as saying.

"Housing is a basic need, but rent levels in our cities mean that low income households will have trouble finding a place that they can afford."

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