A 17-year-old high school student from regional Victoria has said that if people really want to get into the Australian housing market, it’s still a possibility.
“There’s still houses out there if you want to buy ’em and you may have to sacrifice the location where you want to live but if you want a house, there are houses out there that are affordable,” Jock Maddern told the ABC Q&A panel during a Victorian school special on Monday night.
"Here in Melbourne, understandably it's going to be a lot more expensive than in Kaniva," he said, referring to his country hometown near the South Australian border, with a population of just 800 people.
In Melbourne, the current median house price is currently $844,000, while a three-bedroom house in Kaniva can be purchased for as little as $79,000.
Listen: Mamamia Out Loud discuss Australia's rising housing prices and the effect it is having on younger people. Post continues...
When Q&A host Tony Jones asked the teenager how young adults are supposed to save enough to afford a deposit, Maddern replied, "Well, life wasn’t meant to be easy. If it was meant to be easy, everybody would be good at it," drawing laughter from the audience.
"Young kids have got to want to work. There are jobs out there. There will be jobs out there. It could be sweeping the floor at a factory or something. If people want them they can find them," Maddern said.
"No matter how little it is, it banks up as experience and you can move up and get more experience and all of a sudden you have the experience to qualify for the job you want."
Maddern also commented on the same-sex marriage debate, saying, "For someone else to say that's not acceptable is criminally unfair," and called it "unfair to alienate" the Australian Muslim community.
Following the episode, Maddern was widely praised online.
Other panellists on the episode included Minister for the Environment and Energy Josh Frydenberg, Shadow Health Minister Catherine King, Parade College student Pinidu Chandrasekera, Williamstown High School student Aretha Brown and McRobertson Girls' High School student Jacinta Speer.