A minor party is urging the federal government to cap rents despite industry groups warning it would have a profound and negative effect on existing rental supplies. The Greens are pushing for a two-year, emergency rental cap in a bid to ease cost-of-living pressures on households. Further rental caps would also be on the table and limited to 2 per cent for every two years. Greens' housing spokesman Max Chandler-Mather says rents are rising seven times faster than wages and a freeze is needed to ease the burden on the hip pocket. "If the government is serious about cost-of-living relief, if they're serious about affordable housing, then it's a no-brainer to freeze rent rises," he said. "Rents are out of control, millions of Australian renters are struggling to pay the rent, and unless the government wants to see more families sleeping in their cars, they need to do their job and act now to stop this crisis boiling over into a national tragedy." SQM research shows rents in capital cities have risen annually by 17.9 per cent and nationwide at 13.4 per cent. Changes to rental tenancy laws are done through state and territory governments and are not the domain of the Commonwealth. Real Estate Institute ACT chief executive Michelle Tynan believes the proposed solution by the Greens is ideologically motivated and does not consider the economic impact of manipulating the housing market. READ MORE: She said it would likely reduce the number of investors in the market, which would further reduce stock within the rental market. "If your investment doesn't perform and you run at a loss, it's human nature to go 'well, I'll sell'," Ms Tynan told ACM. "If you can't get enough income from your investment property to offset your outgoings, what investor is going to stay in that market?" Ms Tynan noted people are having to spend more time within the rental market due to the rising cost of owning a home in Australia. She said it is about time there was a national summit or discussion about the long-term challenges facing the housing sector, similar to the upcoming jobs and skills summit being held in September. "We need to do a deep dive into how that now looks for the future of Australia," Ms Tynan said. "We need to have a very broad look at how people are actually going to live and how that looks for people who have investment properties, who see their rights as investment owners continually being eroded in every state and territory." The Greens believe its proposal would see wages catch up with rents by 2029. The Victorian government, during the pandemic, enacted rental freezes due to the ongoing uncertainties facing the economy at the height of lockdowns. "Just as the government coordinated a national response to the COVID-19 health crisis, the federal government should intervene to coordinate an emergency, nationwide response to the housing crisis that includes a rent freeze," Mr Chandler-Mather said.