Rising to meet the challenges


Self-confessed battler Peter has met all the challenges that life threw at him. However, like so many who have been priced out of the rental market, increasing financial hardship had taken its toll.

Thankfully, he has found his new and final home in Unison’s affordable new apartments in Melbourne’s West.

Peter is a family man and hard worker. He takes good care of his wife, is super proud of his two children, and adores his grandchildren.

A loyal employee at Toyota for 26 years, Peter found himself unemployed when the plant closed in 2012.  In the years that followed, Peter undertook further training and worked in Aged Care and Security. “I liked going back to school,” Peter smiles. “The young ones used to call me Dad!”

His new career path helped Peter and his wife, Joanne, pay the bills, however their private rental payments were becoming increasingly expensive.  Their financial hardship was taking a toll on their mental and physical health.

“Our bills were piling up and we had to stick to a very tight budget. There was no money in reserve. It was incredibly stressful. Our dream was just to get a home we could afford,” explains Peter.

The couple explored their eligibility for affordable rental and connected with Unison, and last year they moved into Unison’s new $30m apartment complex in Melbourne’s West.

“I was literally shivering with excitement when I was shown the property,” explains Peter, a big, strong guy. “I couldn’t believe it! We now had a beautiful new home with a rent we could afford.”

Peter talks about how the new home has changed the couple’s lives.

“If we hadn’t got this home, I think we would have ended up on the street. I love it here. I walk for 30 minutes every day.”

Peter is delighted to share stories of his grandchildren visiting.  “Our home is a lovely place for the grandchildren to come and visit. They light up our lives.  My granddaughter loves to press the lift buttons and proudly tells her friends that Nanna lives in a hotel!” 

Peter and Joanne are settled. “From the age of 13 I have had to live independently, and I have learnt to rise above life’s challenges. I see this as my new start and my final home."

"Our minds are at rest, life is less complicated and less stressful. This is my full stop.”

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