By REIQ chairman Pamela Bennett
Queensland’s housing affordability continues to outshine New South Wales and Victoria, according to the latest national property data.
The Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) Adelaide Bank/REIA Housing Affordability Report found that NSW remained the least affordable place to buy a home in the country followed by Victoria. Of the three most populous States in Australia, Queensland remained the most affordable to purchase property.
According to the report, Queensland recorded an improvement in housing affordability over the September quarter. The proportion of income required to meet home loan repayments decreased 1.3 percentage points to 27.6 per cent, a drop of 4.0 percentage points compared to the same time last year.
In NSW, the proportion of income required to meet loan repayments was 33.8 per cent over the September quarter. In Victoria, the proportion was 30.9 per cent. Queensland’s proportion rate of 27.6 per cent is also only slightly higher than South Australia.
The widening disparity between house prices in NSW, Victoria and Queensland is likely to spur additional migration into the Sunshine State next year. We haven’t seen any great internal migration here for more than six years however when house prices soar down south many people look to our State as a more affordable place to live.
During the quarter, rental affordability in Queensland remained unchanged. Compared to the September quarter of 2012, the proportion of income required to meet median rents dropped 0.4 percentage points, to 23.9 per cent.
While Queensland recorded the largest quarterly increase in the number of loans to first home buyers – up by 10.2 per cent to 3,300 – compared to the September quarter of 2012, the figure dropped 34.5 per cent. Of the total number of first home buyers that purchased during the quarter, 15.5 per cent were from Queensland.
The average loan to first home buyers decreased 0.9 per cent over the quarter and 2.6 per cent compared to the September quarter of 2012, to $273,333.
The total number of loans (excluding refinancing) increased 4.4 per cent over the quarter and 15.2 per cent compared to the September quarter of last year, to 21,302. The average loan size dropped 0.6 per cent over the quarter, to $294,423, a decrease of 1.7 per cent compared to the figure last year.
According to the report, across the country, first home buyers made up just 13.6 per cent of the owner-occupier market compared to 14.6 per cent in the June quarter. That figure was one of the lowest since the Australian Bureau of Statistics started to collect data on the activity of first home buyers.”