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Queensland vs. New South Wales – it’s an age old football rivalry. And after Wati Holmwood had a huge crack at ruining a great match, Queensland emerged victorious recently. But how is each State currently performing in the game of real estate? Let’s find out in today’s Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) update.

According to the latest updates in Housing and Lending Finance data, both states fared quite well over the month of May, with underlying trends not too dissimilar from each other.

Non-First Home Buyer (FHB) activity was up 7.7 per cent to 9,188 dwellings financed in Queensland during May – the highest monthly total recorded for this segment since September 2009 and back to around the long-term average. Comparatively, results for New South Wales saw non-FHB activity increase by 12 per cent to 14,754 dwellings financed over May, marking the highest since May 2007. Both are welcome results on the back of a better than expected month of April.


FHB levels in Queensland rose by 7.7 per cent to 1,002 dwellings financed while activity in New South Wales increased 11.6 per cent to 1,165 dwellings financed. Both State Governments infamously implemented changes to their first home owners’ grants to comprise new builds only during mid-October of last year. Unsurprisingly, dwellings financed for the FHB segment have fallen 47.2 per cent in Queensland and 50.3 per cent in New South Wales when compared to May 2012. Also while activity in New South Wales has historically been erratic, FHB numbers in recent months have dropped to levels comparable to that of Queensland, despite the former notably having a larger population and property market.

Finally, investor activity surged ahead in both states during the month of May. The total amount loaned to Queensland investors for dwelling purchases for May was its highest recorded since June 2009, representing a 19.2 per cent increase in estimated investor dwellings to 10,757 financed. In New South Wales the total dollar amount loaned to investors for dwelling purchases was the highest ever recorded, representing a 16 per cent increase in estimated investor dwellings to 10,757 financed during May.

So – I hear you ask – who won this matchup? Well to be honest, from looking at the results it’s clear that both states are winners (and yes I’m fully aware this is an absolute copout). Given how the real estate markets in both states have had their struggles since the advent of the Global Financial Crisis these results are quite encouraging, even if the FHB segment isn’t realising its full potential.