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Opinion

Australia’s property market defied pandemic predictions. This is how it’s tipped to fare in 2021

If 2020 taught property pundits anything, it’s to expect the unexpected.

Australia’s first lockdown encouraged analysts to forecast a double-digit dip in the housing market.

But as we know, those predictions failed to transpire and prices – which are only 0.7 per cent below pre-pandemic levels – are on the up.

So, what does the future hold for a market that defied expectations?

When The New Daily asked a select group of experts for their predictions on how prices would fare in 2021, none would provide a figure.

However, they explained some of the key things to look out for.

Regions will continue to grow

BIS Oxford Economics chief economist Dr Sarah Hunter said if local coronavirus cases remained under control and unemployment remained stable, regional areas and detached houses in smaller capitals should continue to streak ahead.

She said there was still plenty of residual demand from buyers capitalising on buyer’s grants and stamp duty concessions, while fighting a sense of FOMO.

“Falling interest rates improved affordability which helped demand, but supply hasn’t responded all that much yet as the volume of transactions – although they are turning – have not risen anywhere near as much,” Dr Hunter told The New Daily earlier this month.

“In terms of long-term sustainability, there’s still demand shock around [reduced] migration, which will likely make apartments cheaper.”

Australia’s property market defied pandemic predictions

Struggling investors could also play a role

That’s a sentiment shared by Suburbanite director Anna Porter.

She believes prices for off-the-plan units – or high-rise apartments – will go backwards.

She said it’s largely due to investors wary about the health of capital city rental markets and unlikely to purchase property as demand from international students remains sluggish.

Which, consequently, would drag down both demand and prices.

The exodus of renters at the height of the pandemic, when tenant-heavy industries were hit by job losses, drove vacancy rates in some capitals above 4 per cent.

Australia’s property market defied pandemic predictions

And data from APRA shows investors have been slow to resume their repayments. Recent analysis by the financial regulator found one-third of deferred loans at the big four banks in October were investment loans.

“There could be a bloodbath that comes to fruition in a short compressed timeframe if people sell in quick succession in areas that don’t have undersupply issues,” Ms Porter told The New Daily.

Impact of deferrals unlikely to be as strong as predicted

Figures from the Australian Banking Association show deferred loans plummeted from 493,440 in June to 169,677 in November – a 66 per cent reduction.

CoreLogic head of research Eliza Owen told The New Daily she expected house prices to continue rising in the first half of 2021, ahead of the conclusion of loan payment holidays.

And other measures are also outweighing any negatives, she said.

Those include historic rate cuts and programs such as HomeBuilder and the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme.

“The only thing worth noting is when you see incentives for first home buyers, for example, it tends to have a vacuum effect where purchases that may have happened anyway are pulled forward,” Ms Owen said.

“Once these schemes run out, we may see demand slow a little bit, and the other thing that could slow price increases is APRA intervention.”

Australia’s property market defied pandemic predictions

Plenty of bargains likely to be found in apartments

Wakelin Property Advisory director Jarrod McCabe said despite a number of home owners on deferrals as a precautionary measure, suburbs where international students traditionally flocked may become “unstable”.

Those include inner-city areas, middle-ring suburbs near universities and locations where investors converted short-term accommodation en masse into long-term rentals.

“If you’re wanting to be an owner-occupier, it spells opportunity because there could be relatively cheap properties, but whether they’re the right types of property is another matter,” Mr McCabe told The New Daily. 

 

Article Source: thenewdaily.com.au

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Opinion

Little movement on HTW residential property clock in April

residential property

Herron Todd White have released their April property clock, and there has been little movement in the residential sector.

Broome and Canberra were the only locations to change their position on the clock in terms of residential housing values, with both regions moving to ‘rising market’.

There were also few changes to the property clock for the residential unit market last month, with the biggest shift being Canberra moving to a declining market.

oowoomba units shifted to ‘start of recovery’ and Emerald is now classified as a ‘rising market’.

The residential property clock

Top of the clock:

Houses – Albury, Bathurst, Burnie/Devonport, Dubbo, Launceston, and Tamworth’s housing values all remain at the peak of the market.

Units – The best-performing unit markets include five of the same locations that featured at the top for houses: Albury, Bathurst, Burnie/Devonport, Launceston, and Tamworth.

Starting to decline

Houses – Wodonga

Units – Wodonga

Declining market

Canberra’s unit market was the only area classified as in decline.

Approaching bottom of the market

No areas

Bottom of the market

Houses – Albany, Geraldton, and Kalgoorlie remain at the bottom of the market.

Units – Albany, Geraldton, and Kalgoorlie all make another appearance for units, along with Sydney and the Whitsunday region.

Start of recovery 

Houses – Alice Springs, Bundaberg, and Darwin’s housing markets were all classified as being at the start of their recovery.

Units – Alice Springs, Brisbane, Bundaberg, Cairns, Canberra, Darwin, Emerald, Ipswich, Melbourne, Perth, South West WA, Toowoomba, and Townsville’s unit markets are also starting to recover.

Rising market

Houses – Once again, it’s a crowded field on the rising market end of the clock, with Adelaide, Adelaide Hills, Ballina/Byron Bay, Barossa Valley, Brisbane, Broome, Cairns, Canberra, Central Coast, Coffs Harbour, Emerald, Gladstone, Gold Coast, Hervey Bay, Hobart, Illawarra, Ipswich, Karratha, Lismore, Mackay, Melbourne, Mildura, Mount Gambier, Newcastle, Perth, Port Hedland, Rockhampton, Shepparton, South West WA, Southern Highlands, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, Toowoomba, Townsville, and Whitsunday housing markets all on the rise.

Units – Adelaide, Adelaide Hills, Ballina/Byron Bay, Barossa Valley, Broome, Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, Gladstone, Gold Coast, Hervey Bay, Hobart, Illawarra, Karratha, Lismore, Mackay, Mildura, Mt Gambier, Newcastle, Port Hedland, Rockhampton, Shepparton, Southern Highlands, and the Sunshine Coast’s unit markets were all classified as rising.

Approaching peak of the market

Geelong was the only location classed as approaching the peak of the market for both houses and units.

 

Article Source: eliteagent.com

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Opinion

Is now a good time to buy property? Nearly 40 per cent of people think so, despite record house prices

house prices

House prices are at historical highs, records tumble every weekend at real estates auctions around the country and price growth rates continue to rise.

Despite those facts, nearly 40 per cent of Australians believe that now is a good time to buy.

According to new research from the financial comparison website Canstar, 38 per cent of those surveyed believed that it was a good idea to buy property now.

Canstar group executive financial services Steve Mickenbecker said that of those who thought it was a good time to buy, many were expecting prices to continue to rise. They also cited low interest rates as another reason.

“Either way there will be no shortage of buyers as sellers come out,” he said.

“Today the market is overwhelmed with buyers, auctions are intensely competitive, open houses crowded, and unconditional contracts are becoming the norm. Low housing supply on the market has intensified the fear of missing out. We are in a low interest rate frenzy.”

Of the 39 per cent who said they didn’t think now was a good time to buy, 45 per cent said the market was currently in a bubble, inflated or under-supplied.

Mr Mickenbecker said the almost-equal number of respondents who said it was a good time and a bad time to buy indicated the rapid growth was slowing down.

“The Reserve Bank and APRA are likely to welcome a leading indicator of a return to balance, tempering growth and discouraging bank excess, but at the same time strong enough to support sustainable economic growth that won’t implode,” he said.

“The Reserve Bank doesn’t want to hurt the broader economy with higher interest rates and currency and is hoping for healthy property prices to support spending, but at a slower pace, so first-home buyers can afford to stay in the race.”

The latest quarterly Domain House Price Report, released last week, found price growth had hit a 32-year high in March.

Sydney’s median house price for the last quarter was $1.3 million, and Melbourne’s reached a record high of $975,000. Hobart’s was just above $600,000, and prices in Canberra grew 20 per cent in a year to a median of $930,000.

Brisbane and Adelaide’s median house prices were at their highest ever, and Perth’s was at its highest since December 2015. Darwin’s median house price was at its highest since December 2017.

CoreLogic figures released this week showed the rapid growth had started to slow, but prices continued to grow in every capital city and regional market in April.

“First-home buyers have been anything but deterred from the market and have leapt in with gusto, encouraged by government incentives,” Mr Mickenbecker said. “They are increasingly competing with investors able to make unconditional offers and blow them away at auctions, and would clearly welcome a more stable market.

“The market continues unabated for now, but a slow and steady future is hopefully ahead of us.”

 

Article Source: www.domain.com.au

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Opinion

CoreLogic: Home values continue to rise but the pace of growth loses steam in April

Home values

Australian housing values lifted by 1.8% in April according to CoreLogic’s national home value index, with the monthly pace of capital gains easing from a 32-year high in March (2.8%).  Although growth conditions have slowed, housing values are still rising at a rapid pace, up 6.8% over the past three months to be 10.2% higher than the COVID low in September last year.

CoreLogic’s research director, Tim Lawless, says the pace of capital gains could slow further over the coming months as inventory levels rise and affordability constraints dampen housing demand.

“The slowdown in housing value appreciation is unsurprising given the rapid rate of growth seen over the past six months, especially in the context of subdued wages growth.  With housing prices rising faster than incomes, it’s likely price sensitive sectors of the market, such as first home buyers and lower income households, are finding it harder to save for a deposit and transactional costs.”

Home values

Home values

 

There is already some evidence of fewer first time buyers in the market, with the Australian Bureau of Statistics reporting a -4.0% fall in the value of first home buyer home loans through February, the first drop since May last year.

Despite the slowdown, positive housing market conditions remain geographically broad-based with every capital city and ‘rest-of-state’ region continuing to record a lift in dwelling values over the month.   Darwin (2.7%) and Sydney (2.4%) recorded the largest month-on-month rise in dwelling values, while Perth values recorded the lowest rate of growth amongst the capital cities at 0.8%.

The four smallest capital cities recorded double digit annual growth (Adelaide 10.3%, Hobart 13.8%, Darwin 15.3% and Canberra 14.2%), reflecting a smaller COVID-related disruption and an earlier start to the growth phase last year.  Melbourne is recording the lowest level of annual growth (2.2%) due to a larger downturn, attributable to the extended lockdown period last year.

The broad trend of houses outperforming the unit sector continued through April as higher density styles of housing experienced less demand amidst elevated supply across some inner city precincts.  At the combined capital city level house values (8.6%) have risen at double the pace of unit values (4.3%) over the first four months of the year.

“A preference shift away from higher density housing during a global pandemic is understandable, however a rise in flexible working arrangements also seems to be supporting greater demand for houses around the outer-fringes of capital cities.  Relatively weak investor activity, compounded by a supply overhang in some high-rise precincts, is also dampening price growth in unit markets,” Mr Lawless said.

Home values

 

 

Article Source: www.corelogic.com.au

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