That Landlord From Q+A Complained About Renters ‘Demonising’ Her & Read The (Mouldy) Room

That landlord who appeared on Q+A to ask why “all landlords are demonised” has responded to the public backlash she received for her televised question, saying she still doesn’t understand what people’s problems with landlords are. 

Despite being the national broadcaster’s platform for Australians to find definite answers to their queries, it seems Q+A has left Melbourne landlord Ann-Maree Eastman with more Qs than As. 

Monday night’s episode of Q+A featured a question from Eastman who was pissed at the poor reputation landlords have currently. She claimed they are “demonised” by the public, but cannot understand why.

“Owning property is a business and takes time and effort to make sure all is running smoothly. I’m just so angry that, as a landlord, I shouldn’t have to feel guilty about owning property – or properties, in our case,” she said, before asking her question.

“Why does it appear that all landlords are demonised and put in the same bracket?”

This question from the self-described “self-funded retiree” was then torn to shreds by people online who pointed out where her “self” funding was actually coming from.

Landlord responds to her Q+A backlash

Eastman spoke to to share that she was shocked at the fact viewers thought she came across as an entitled landlord. 

“I’m not quite sure why. There were six questions, so I’m not sure why mine is the one everyone has jumped on,” she told the publication.

If I had a house for every time she surprised me, I would still be renting

In an even less surprising “typical landlord behaviour” fashion, Eastman claimed that she’s not like other landlords, and pointed out that some property owners “absorb the costs” of interest rate rises. She did not clarify if she was one of these landlords.

Labdlord Eastman (left) VS. renter Max Chandler-Mather on Q+A. (Source: ABC)

She then said that though she’s aware renters “can’t afford to rent and whatever”, she said she can’t be held “responsible for everybody’s life situation”.

“I know there is a lot of homelessness. I know that people are struggling but I’m not the big bad person. It’s not like we have 20-30 properties, we just have a few,” said Eastman.

Oh? You only have “a few” of something that people need for survival? And you’re treating them like business ventures? Well good on you for knowing that homelessness exists, and then profiting off that. FFS. 

Christ, it’s like these people are incapable of understanding that when they open their mouths and explain their perspective, they just shoot themselves in the foot. 

Of course, me saying that would just make Eastman feel further “demonised” because, I forgot, the person with “just a few” properties is the victim here.

“A lot of renters say landlords don’t care. You are dumping us all into the bucket and we are not all in the same bucket,” Eastman continued.

“Just think about if you are a renter, who you are renting from? If they sell their property, who are you going to rent from?”

What Eastman failed to understand is that people had a big problem with her saying that she was a “self-funded retiree”, because she is profiting off of her tenants’ income — but more on that later.

What happened on the housing special Q+A episode?

For those of you who don’t watch Q+A because you have a sense of self-respect and would rather watch something classier, like Married At First Sight, here’s what went down on the “homeownership, homelessness & housing supply” episode.

For the episode’s second question, Eastman confessed to the panel that she was “just so angry” about the current discourse.

“My heart is just pounding from the comments I’ve heard. Why do politicians feel that they need to keep taxing or changing the rules for how to claim our legitimate business expenses?” she asked.

However, in typical landlord fashion, she couldn’t just have one question like everyone else. She needed to have a second question, an investment question, so to speak.

“Owning property is a business and takes time and effort to make sure all is running smoothly. I’m just so angry that, as a landlord, I shouldn’t have to feel guilty about owning property – or properties, in our case,” she continued, before asking her ‘nest-egg‘ question.

“Why does it appear that all landlords are demonised and put in the same bracket?”

In response, Greens MP and housing spokesperson Max Chandler-Mather highlighted how there is a lot more that’s unfair at the moment than just the “demonising” of property owners.

“We have had a tax system that has encouraged people to buy up property investments, and then able to write off any losses they make on that investment, off on their tax. And look, I’m sorry, I just don’t think that’s fair,” answered Chandler-Mather.

Q+A host Patricia Karvelas then posed to Chandler-Mather that due to the rise of interest rates, “some landlords actually are in significant financial trouble” too.

“The worst consequences for that is selling an investment property and making huge capital gains,” the Greens MP slammed back.

“I think that, really, the voices of renters continually get silenced because the interests of landlords get put up against renters as if they are equal. But they are not, because if a renter loses their home, they’re sleeping in their car or on the street. If a property investor has to sell their home, that might be bad, but they still get a huge sale price out of that home.”

Image: ABC.

Karvelas then asked Eastman who exactly she felt she was being “demonised” by, which resulted in the landlord revealing how little she actually knew about the current government’s policy on her tax exemptions.

“I feel demonised by the government, because they want to take away capital gains tax,” said Eastman.

Thing is, the government hasn’t done that. Or even proposed that. At all.

Since Labor’s loss of the 2019 Federal Election, its government hasn’t wanted to touch negative gearing or the capital gains tax with a 9000-foot-pole — despite constant pressure from the Greens, as Chandler-Mather pointed out.

“Don’t worry, it’s only the Greens that want to do that,” Chandler-Mather said cheekily, to the laughter of the audience.

Though this looked like the end of the discussion, Eastman then did the thing that the audience members on Q+A love doing, which is neither a ‘Q’ or an ‘A’, but a ‘LUC’ — long unrequested comment.

“There’s a reason why my husband and I got into investment in property, was because we could not see the government always being able to support us in retirement. We’re self-funded retirees. We get nothing from the government. We don’t get a health care card. We will be supporting ourselves,” she shared.

This self-identification of “self-funded retiree” caught the attention of folks online, because of the mental gymnastics it would take to get to.

Internet slams Q+A’s ‘self-funded’ landlord

Countless people on social media platform X pointed out that if you require the income of renters to live off, then by definition you are not “self-funded”.

“Tenant-and-taxpayer-funded retiree would be a more accurate description,” commented one X user.

Last week research into the Australian housing market found that to afford living comfortably in an average home in Australia, an individual would need to make at least $164K a year.

Chandler-Mather told PEDESTRIAN.TV that abolishing negative gearing and the capital gains tax would help to make housing more affordable — even if it would mean landlords like Ann-Maree Eastman aren’t happy about the fact they can’t “self-fund” their retirement through other people’s incomes anymore.

“Lots of people are already getting a second job to try and make ends meet and it is still not enough to buy a home,” said Chandler-Mather to PTV.

“I reckon a much better solution is to stop giving property investors billions of dollars in tax handouts rather than try and force a hard working nurse to find a second job.”

Or, they could always become “self-funded” and use someone else for money. Gotta love landlord logic.

[Image Credit: ABC.]