S Sense

The rich are getting richer and the rentals are getting fewer and more expensive.

Some people make squillions by being incompetent CEOs. (Oh Dick, youve wrecked the company. Heres $12 million.)

Some people can pollute the atmosphere, a whole river system, destroy hectares of forest and ruin established local agricultural industries just to make themselves a packet from resources that arent theirs in the first place.

Theyre applauded by other rich people like the government. (Oh John, you wrecked the river. Heres $12 million.)

And the price of everything goes up.

All that excess money has produced nothing except a wealthy, degenerate class begrudgingly reliant on the lowlives that support them. And its driven the cost of housing through the roof. (Oh, the pun.)

To buy a home youve got to mortgage yourself for life. And trying to rent a place in Lismore is a degrading process.

Back in the uncivilised days when Lismore had a railway service, no pokies in the pubs and affordable homes, renting wasnt the humiliating experience its become.

You could go to a real estate agent and they would gladly show you around the available rental properties. (In their own car. At a time convenient for you.) Not just nod at a flyer listing the current rentals. You would check out the properties and if you saw one you liked youd say, Yes Charlie, that looks comfy. Ill take it. Then youd shake his hand and that was that.

Not anymore.

Real estate agencies are way up themselves now. Theyve made a bucketload as the rich have upped housing prices while the average wage has lagged way behind.

The rental situation is a crisis.

Flood schmud. Politicians should come here with their blue shirts, cream pants, concerned expressions and photo opportunities and try to understand the social harm that a lack of affordable housing generates. Maybe even do something about it.

These days, if a place comes up for rent then the agent will declare a viewing time at his or her convenience. Maybe a dozen desperate groups will check out the property. Then you fill in a form giving all your details. (And I mean all. You can get a passport or a gun or an Asian wife with less information.)

And thats the last youll hear of the agent.

Invariably, someone else will get the place. (And no phone call to let you know you didnt.) There is no governmental supervision or transparency in the selection criteria. The referees you have given them will not be rung.

I reckon the best way to get a rental is to flirt with the owner or manager even the receptionist of the real estate agency. Oh yeah. Get a relationship happening. Talk dirty dividends. Create a sticky bond. Bring flowers and a bottle of cabernet sauvignon. Or six months rent in advance.

Then youll have a chance.

Or, if all else fails, apply now for a room in Lismores upcoming home for the homeless.


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