Housing affordability in Australia is currently the best it’s been since 2003, leading to a gentle surge in the number of first-home buyers grabbing a real estate bargain.
“For would be first home buyers, conditions have improved significantly and clearly many Australians are taking up the opportunity to get into home ownership.
Cuts with interest rates and the first home owners grant have made a large impact.”
– HIA chief executive Chris Lamont
It really is a good time to buy, especially if you’re a first-home buyer. Property prices have dipped over the last 6 months, interest rates are still on the way down, and Uncle Kevin is still giving away at least $14,000 to everyone who buys a home for the first time. I would definitely be buying up now if I were currently renting a property. According to the Housing Industry Association, real estate was more affordable in all capital cities and regional areas during the December quarter, with Perth and Brisbane at the top of the list.
Agents selling at the budget end are going well, but many other real estate agents are still quiet, and some are being forced out of the industry.
So when will the good news about housing affordability flow over and impact positively on the whole real estate industry?
I don’t know, and I’m a little surprised it hasn’t yet. Properties under $500,000 are flying out the door, but above that it’s still pretty quiet. I would have thought that the activity at the bottom would have a flow on effect, though maybe that will still happen in 6 to 12 months. At the moment it seems as though people are still concerned about their job security, and this is probably the one thing holding them back. Mind you, one of my biggest clients, who largely deals in properties in Brisbane over $1 million, is exceptionally busy. They’ve got a lot of listings hitting the market, and things seem to be going well.