Around 74% of people living in share housing in Victoria have lost their job or had their working hours slashed since the beginning of COVID-19, with one in five reporting that they had skipped meals in order to afford necessities, a University of Melbourne study has found.

Need somewhere to store cash and earn interest? The table below features introductory savings accounts with some of the highest interest rates on the market.

Provider

4000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance

High Interest Savings Account (< $250k)

  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance
4000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties

Savings Account (Amounts < $250k)

  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties
02000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
No monthly fees
  • Download the App to open your account
  • Get better visibility of your spending within App!
  • Deposit $200 per month to activate bonus interest
No monthly fees

Save Account

  • Download the App to open your account
  • Get better visibility of your spending within App!
  • Deposit $200 per month to activate bonus interest
020000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

HomeME Savings Account ($0 - $100,000)

    02001$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

    Growth Saver ($1 - $25k)

      010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
      For customers aged 14-35 years
      For customers aged 14-35 years

      Future Saver Account ( < $50k)

        05001$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
        • Maximum Age - 24

        Goal Saver

        • Maximum Age - 24
        010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

        Boost Saver

          00.011$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

          Reward Saver Account (31 years +) ($0-$100k)

            01000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

            Bonus Saver Account (Amounts < $100k)

              0201$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

              Reward Saver Kick Start (Amounts ≤ $1m)

                00.010$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                Life (< 30 years) (Monthly deposit)

                  5000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                  NetBank Saver

                    000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                    ANZ Save

                      010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                      Savings Maximiser (<$100k)

                        050$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                        Young Saver Account

                          0501$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                          Save up

                            010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
                            • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
                            • No account fees
                            • Easy access to your money

                            Saver Account (<$250k)

                            • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
                            • No account fees
                            • Easy access to your money
                            02000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                            Bonus Saver (<$1 Million)

                              000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

                              Smart Saver Account (Under 25)

                                Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

                                All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of May 29, 2024. View disclaimer.

                                The research, which surveyed more than 1,000 people who have lived in a share house in Victoria in 2020, revealed extreme levels of housing stress among those who are already a vulnerable demographic - 82% were under the age of 35 while a fifth were visa holders and half were in casual or non-permanent jobs.

                                A fifth pawned or sold something to afford the essentials while a similar number said they couldn't pay the rent on time.

                                What's more, 44% reported to being under housing stress - defined as paying more than 30% of their income on rent.

                                One in five said they were spending more than half of their income on housing, despite 20% of people successfully negotiating rental reductions with their landlords.

                                Read more: How much should I spend on rent in Australia?

                                Two in five said they changed their living situation, such as moving house or changing occupants in their home, while 16% reported living in an overcrowded share house.

                                New data from mobile storage company Taxibox also showed a rise in young adults packing up to move back home with their parents during the pandemic.

                                The survey revealed a 182% spike in people between the ages of 18 and 24 using the Taxibox website, with bookings rising 198%.

                                University of Melbourne School of Design postdoctoral research fellow and lead researcher Dr Katrina Raynor said the pandemic had highlighted the plight of young people living in share houses and made it worse.

                                "People living in share houses are more likely to be young, employed on casual contracts, international students or living in informal housing arrangements. It makes them more at risk of homelessness and housing stress than the general population," Dr Raynor said.

                                "These are all groups of people that have fared poorly in the current pandemic and may have been struggling before the pandemic hit as well."

                                The survey, which was conducted in June 2020 before the stage four restrictions came into effect, highlighted the importance of JobKeeper and JobSeeker payments among this demographic, with a third of respondents accessing these payments.

                                "Given that 20% of this group are unemployed and 44% are either in housing stress or severe housing stress, the removal of JobKeeper and the Coronavirus Supplement of the JobSeeker payments is likely to tip many members of this cohort further into severe financial stress," Dr Raynor said.

                                Dr Raynor added the rental moratorium on evictions needs to be extended and called for rental rights to be improved.

                                "Several respondents explained that they were afraid they would be forced to leave if they asked for a rental reduction while others explained that their landlord or estate agent was ‘so bad that it would have been too much hassle'," Dr Raynor said.

                                "For many, the lack of comfort asking for a reduction stemmed from the fact that they are not formally listed on the lease and are subletting from other housemates."

                                Dr Raynor also added that additional rental protections are necessary to protect the rights of the 20% of respondents who either have no formal lease or are on leases of less than six months.

                                "Unlike low-income renters in the social housing system, most people in share housing receive limited support and little security of tenure," she said. 

                                "Going forward, these are people who will likely need targeted housing and employment support."