Connect with us

Finance

Developers Big Winners in Lending Battle

Developers

First, the bad news. A wave of increasing construction costs is hitting Australia’s property development sector.

Now, the good news.

According to Barwon Investment Partners head of property finance Jonathon Pullin: “It has probably never been a better time to be a developer or property owner wanting to take on debt”.

Pullin, who was a speaker at The Urban Developer’s recent Construction and Finance webinar, said Australia’s lending landscape had become increasingly competitive during the past 12 to 18 months.

Record low cash rates are prevailing and there are large amounts of capital available out in the market both on the debt side and also coming through on the equity side.

“The major bank lenders in Australia that have had a rough time of it over the last five or six years, they’re coming out the back of the Royal Commission, they’re coming into a bit more certainty through the Covid journey,” he said.

“And what we’re seeing across the country and in all sectors, they’re starting to become a little more front-footed in terms of wanting to get back into the market and claw back some of that market share that they lost to the larger non-bank lenders.

“Also, on the equity side of things, we’re not only seeing valuations hold up but improve—particularly in the residential side of the market—and a strong level of confidence from buyers.

“Put all that together … as a property owner or a developer it’s probably never been a better time for you in terms of financing your project and moving it forward.

“There are a whole lot more options out there in the market than what there and all of those options are broadly cheaper than where they were a few years ago.”

Pullin said the major banks had started to loosen some of their traditional covenants to win back business.

“Going back three years, across the market it was a 100 per cent pre-sales requirement for any residential project but you’ll see that’s now more a conversation around 80 per cent coverage and even in some cases lower than that,” he said.

“Funding limits also are increasing. At its worst, only a few years ago, the major banks were typically stopping at 65 per cent, maybe 70 per cent, of total development cost… we’re now seeing it coming up to 75 per cent of total development cost, sometimes 80 per cent.”

Pullin said institutional-grade mezzanine debt lenders were becoming an increasingly accepted part of the capital structure with the major banks working in conjunction with them to win business.

He said non-bank lenders, particularly institutional non-bank lenders, were “very hungry to do business” and broadening their sector and location coverage.

“Non-bank lenders are going up and over where the traditional bank will go to because they know their cost of capital is higher … but they will bring with it a lesser requirement around pre-sales.

“Typically, we’re seeing them look for 30 to 50 per cent pre-sales just to validate that project is accepted into the market.

“The benefit of these slightly higher cost solutions is projects can get going earlier and it allows developers to potentially lessen further increases in costs that are sitting on the horizon, like that wave of increasing construction costs.

“We are seeing a lot of developers really wanting to get their skates on at the moment and get projects under construction. So, if they don’t have pre-sales yet they’ll make as decision around whether they need to go with a non-bank solution with a lower pre-sales cover.”

Developers

▲ The major banks are loosening traditional covenants to claw back business lost to non-bank lenders.

Pullin said he expects the lending landscape to become even more competitive over the next 12 to 24 months with the possible emergence of alternate funding structures and some opportunistic lending coming into the market around sectors heavily Covid-affected.

“What does that mean for developers and property owners?

“An increased focus on hard costs from financiers in terms of looking at feasibilities and scenarios, further reductions in lending costs and loosening of covenants around the edges in a requirement to deploy capital.

“So really what you get at the end of day is more options available to developers that hopefully leads to better projects and better outcomes for them.”

Pullin said institutional-grade mezzanine debt lenders were becoming an increasingly accepted part of the capital structure with the major banks working in conjunction with them to win business.

He said non-bank lenders, particularly institutional non-bank lenders, were “very hungry to do business” and broadening their sector and location coverage.

“Non-bank lenders are going up and over where the traditional bank will go to because they know their cost of capital is higher … but they will bring with it a lesser requirement around pre-sales.

“Typically, we’re seeing them look for 30 to 50 per cent pre-sales just to validate that project is accepted into the market.

“The benefit of these slightly higher cost solutions is projects can get going earlier and it allows developers to potentially lessen further increases in costs that are sitting on the horizon, like that wave of increasing construction costs.

“We are seeing a lot of developers really wanting to get their skates on at the moment and get projects under construction. So, if they don’t have pre-sales yet they’ll make as decision around whether they need to go with a non-bank solution with a lower pre-sales cover.”

Pullin said he expects the lending landscape to become even more competitive over the next 12 to 24 months with the possible emergence of alternate funding structures and some opportunistic lending coming into the market around sectors heavily Covid-affected.

“What does that mean for developers and property owners?

“An increased focus on hard costs from financiers in terms of looking at feasibilities and scenarios, further reductions in lending costs and loosening of covenants around the edges in a requirement to deploy capital.

“So really what you get at the end of day is more options available to developers that hopefully leads to better projects and better outcomes for them.”

 

Article Source: www.theurbandeveloper.com

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Brisbane

Investors continue to tip metropolitan markets as offering the best investment prospects: PIPA survey

Investors

Nearly 62 per cent of investors believe now is a good time to invest in residential property

Investors continue to tip metropolitan markets as offering the best investment prospects, according to the 2021 PIPA Annual Investor Sentiment Survey.

The national annual survey, which gathered insights online from nearly 800 property investors during August, found that more than 76 per cent of investors believe property prices in their state or territory will increase over the next year.

It was up strongly from 41 per cent last year, PIPA chairman Peter Koulizos said.

“Few people believed the positive investor sentiment in last year’s survey, even though history had showed the resilience of real estate time and time again.

“When we think back to last year, which was a time of much fear and uncertainty, it’s clear that property investors and the market in general has weathered that turbulent period better than anyone dared to hope,” Mr Koulizos said.

The key findings found the pandemic continues to make it less likely that investors will sell a property over the next 12 months, according to 59 per cent of respondents (down from 71 per cent last year). However, about 18 per cent (up from seven per cent in 2020) said it had made them more likely to sell.

Queensland emerged as the winner by a serious margin with a staggering 58 per cent of investors believing the Sunshine State offers the best property investment prospects over the next year – up from 36 per cent last year.

 Investors

Trellis 20 Edmondstone Street, South Brisbane QLD 4101 

New South Wales was second at 16 per cent (down from 21 per cent in 2020) and Victoria was third at 10 per cent, down significantly from 27 per cent last year.

“While investors continue to tip metropolitan markets as offering the best investment prospects at nearly 50 per cent (but down from 61 per cent in 2020), regional markets are in favour with 25 per cent of investors (up from 22 per cent) as well as coastal locations with 21 per cent of survey respondents (up strongly from 12 per cent last year),” Mr Koulizos said.

The two leading concerns of the investors surveyed were gaining access to lending and Australian economic conditions – “the same situation as last year.”

 

Article Source: www.urban.com.au

Continue Reading

Finance

Property Refinancing Hits Record Highs

Refinancing

Mortgage refinancing hit a record high in August, surpassing the record set in June 2020 when the Reserve Bank of Australia’s double rate cut impacted activity.

The Pexa index showed refinancing activity has steadily increased since 2019 with approximately 300,000 refinances completed in the past financial year, up around 10 per cent on the previous year.

Pexa Insight head of research Mike Gill said the index stood at 187 points for the week ending August 29, 2021, up 46.9 per cent on last year.

“Whether it is the forced downtime to reassess finances during Covid-19 related lockdowns, or speculation surrounding a potential interest rate rise as early as late 2022, refinance activity has reached new heights nationally,” Gill said.

“We anticipate a dip in property sale transactions as a result of the extended Covid-19-led lockdowns in New South Wales and Victoria, however, refinance activity is expected to remain elevated in the near future based on the current trend line.”

The reserve bank decided to hold the cash rate at 0.10 per cent this week, as the delta outbreak had interrupted the economic recovery.

Governor Philip Lowe said they would not increase the cash rate again, until actual inflation is sustainably within the 2 to 3 per cent target range, which was estimated to be in 2024.

“Housing prices are continuing to rise, although turnover in some markets has declined following the virus outbreak,” Lowe said.

“Housing credit growth has picked up due to stronger demand for credit by both owner-occupiers and investors.

“Given the environment of rising housing prices and low interest rates, the bank is monitoring trends in housing borrowing carefully and it is important that lending standards are maintained.”

 

Article Source: www.theurbandeveloper.com

 

Continue Reading

Developments

Developer Contributions ‘Inflating New House Prices’

Developer

Developer contributions are having an inflationary effect on housing affordability and impeding supply, according to new research.

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation’s (NHFIC) research report on developer contributions has found that the infrastructure charges are increasingly acting like a “tax on new housing”.

Developer contributions, or infrastructure charges, are levies charged by local and state governments to help pay for local infrastructure, focusing on water, drainage, footpaths, parks and community facilities.

NHFIC cites the unpredictability and opaque nature of infrastructure charges as a core issue in developers’ feasibility studies.

It also says often this charge becomes an on-cost for homebuyers or end-users, impacting housing affordability significantly.

According to NHFIC, developers have to factor in infrastructure charges at around 10 per cent of total development costs—but generally higher in New South Wales, and up to $85,000 per greenfield dwelling development in some areas.

Greenfield developer contributions (per lot)

Region Indicative cost Developer contributions (% of total cost)
NSW $58,000 11%
Vic $52,000 11%
Qld $32,000 8%

^Source: Developer Contributions report, NHFIC

Housing Industry Association chief executive of industry policy Kristin Brookfield said development contribution schemes had become a significant hindrance.

“This is partially due to the large range of infrastructure now included and the gold-plated standards being sought by local and state governments,” Brookfield said.

“A conscious decision to shift the majority of the upfront costs on to new housing developments emerged in New South Wales almost two decades ago … Sydney is the most expensive [but] other states have taken the same approach and we are starting to see costs increase in most other states.”

Brookfield said the upfront charge was the least efficient way to recover infrastructure costs and was impacting the costs of new homes.

“The HIA would support further research to assess the unintended impacts of high and poorly functioning development contribution systems nationally and the implications these taxes are having on new homebuyers,” she said.

NHFIC said it was a “concern that the application, scope and administration of developer contributions is a relatively opaque area of public policy” and that there was little information available to compare states and territories.

An analysis of Sydney councils showed up to 88 per cent of all funds raised through developer contributions between 2017 and 2020 were earmarked for social infrastructure.

Around one-third, on average, was earmarked for essential infrastructure with a stronger nexus to new housing developments.

According to NHFIC, improved policy co-ordination and optimising risk to share cost arrangements between councils and developers would increase new housing supply.

 

Article Source: www.theurbandeveloper.com

Continue Reading

Positive Cashflow Property

duplex designs, dual occupancy homes

Property Investment Advice

gold coast property management

Trending

website average bounce rate