Victim of rental crisis desperate for help

By JACK MORPHET

A HOMELESS victim of Griffith 's rental crisis has made a desperate plea for someone to help put a roof over the heads of her five children.

Despite months of frantic attempts to find a house for her family, the willing tenant hasn’t had so much as a returned call. 

On Wednesday The Area News reported the Murrumbidgee had the lowest rental availability in the state, which Ms Corkery blames for her predicament.

Ms Corkery relies on the charity of the Griffith Women’s Shelter to provide housing for her children Tairell, 9, Jamahl, 8, Layla, 5, Junior, 2, and Tinara, 1.

“I have either visited or rung the real estate agencies every single day for the last three and a half months – I don’t know what else to do,” Ms Corkery said.

“I am homeless and living in the Griffith Women’s Refuge in a single bedroom and it hurts when my kids ask me for a house I can’t give to them.

“The kids are just as depressed as I am – it makes me cry just to talk about it.”

Ms Corkery has applied for rental properties worth up to $350 per week, which would stretch her single pension but she was willing to make any number of sacrifices for a house.  

“I am a single pensioner, but I would pay anything to get my kids into a home,” she said.

“I am willing to make sacrifices if someone would give me an opportunity but no one has given me so much as a chance.

“In three-and-a-half months I haven’t had one call back, I’m not sure if it’s because I have five kids or what the problem is.”

Griffith Real Estate’s Brian Bertolin said there had been reduced selection in the rental market since the Yenda floods hit two years ago in March.

“Where there might have been 20 properties vacant before the floods, there might be 10 or 12 now – the market is tighter than usual,” Mr Bertolin said.

“The lower end of the market, places in the $150 to $200 price bracket, has been more affected than the top end.

“We are finding there is a really quick take-up at the lower end but people have to settle for something that’s not quite what they had in mind, although most people find something within a few weeks.”

Mr Bertolin said the conditions weren’t exclusive to Griffith, insisting the trend was nation-wide. 

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