Strugglers stuck in costly homes

MOST Australians who are stuck long-term in unaffordable housing are older, single women, those with a disability and those caring for others in their home, a new study has found.

The most widely used measure classifies people as being in unaffordable housing if they are in the lowest 40% of income earners and their rent or mortgage payments exceed 30% of their income.

The University of Melbourne and University of Adelaide study showed there were two key groups of people suffering from a lack of affordable housing.

It found some were "slipping" in and out of housing affordability problems, and others were stuck for long periods - up to a lifetime.

Of those long-term "stickers", the study found they had much lower incomes and employment rates, and about 60% had a disability.

More than 75% of those stuck in unaffordable housing were also older women most likely living alone.