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Canberra makes the unaffordable top 50!

By johnboy - 24 January 2011 13

unaffordable housing

Holden Caulfield has been in touch to point out the Demographia global survey of housing affordability.

Despite the Chief Minister telling us what a great job he’s doing Canberra’s made the top fifty.

Are we proud yet?

What’s Your opinion?


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13 Responses to
Canberra makes the unaffordable top 50!
Chop71 1:24 pm 25 Jan 11

good to see we all go crazy over this “limited” study. Good to see we don’t compare ourselves against, the rest of the world outside, North America, NZ and the UK. (oh and throw in Hong Kong to try and make it look more global).

Felix 11:36 am 25 Jan 11

To be fair to poor old Stanhope (goes slightly against the grain, but I’m in a good mood today) Canberra only came in around or a little below the middle for Australia. Hell, beautiful downtown Bendigo is worse!
What this survey DOES show is how grossly over-inflated the entire housing market is in Australia.
I think Canberra is merely a part of the phenomonon rather than being especially awful in comparison with other Australian cities.

sirocco 11:04 am 25 Jan 11

jasmine said :

Wagga Wagga more expensive than Canberra? Really! A quick tour on realestate.com.au reveals that Wagga is much cheaper than Canberra. So is Bendigo but you don’t need a website to know that.

Australia does rank high on the unaffordable housing stakes for sure but these figures seem a bit shaky.

Ah, nope. We are looking at median house prices relative to gross annual household incomes.

So if you look to page 32 of the survey Canberra’s median house price ($558k) is only topped by Sydney ($634k) and Melbourne ($565k).

But our gross annual median household income is just over $100,000 – the highest for the country. Whereas other cities like Sydney with $66,200 and Melbourne with $63,100 means that in terms of affordability (and our subsequent right to bitch and moan about house prices) we sit waaay down the list.

You are right Jasmine, Wagga’s median house price is a lowly $310,100 but their household income, at $53,800, is almost half ours.

jasmine 10:26 am 25 Jan 11

Wagga Wagga more expensive than Canberra? Really! A quick tour on realestate.com.au reveals that Wagga is much cheaper than Canberra. So is Bendigo but you don’t need a website to know that.

Australia does rank high on the unaffordable housing stakes for sure but these figures seem a bit shaky.

amarooresident3 4:46 pm 24 Jan 11

rosscoact said :

I agree, the actual story is that Canberra is equal 21st least affordable city but if you say it like that in the slightly hysterical shreiking tone employed by some sections of the old and new media, it just don’t work

Do you mean to say statistics don’t tell the full story? I’m shocked, just shocked.

georgesgenitals 3:36 pm 24 Jan 11

I suspect we’ll drift down the list over the next few years. There’ll be neither a crash nor a boom in the short term.

Holditz 3:10 pm 24 Jan 11

Now wait- on the weekend there was a newspiece on the ABC that showed that Canberrans rate their city so much that Canberra is the second most livable capital city in Australia (behind Adelaide).

Doesn’t that show we’re proud?

arescarti42 2:57 pm 24 Jan 11

Holden Caulfield said :

It would be Canberra’s higher than normal average wage that pushes us a bit further down the list I suspect. Which, when gauging affordability for a city’s residents, is fair enough, I guess!

That’s exactly the thing, it is not that housing in Canberra is appreciably cheaper than in Melbourne or Sydney, just that Canberra residents have comparatively higher incomes than Melbourne/Sydney.

Erg0 2:39 pm 24 Jan 11

Given the number of Australian cities in the top 50, I’d say that we’re not actually doing too badly.

That’s if these stats actually meant anything, which they don’t.

Holden Caulfield 2:19 pm 24 Jan 11

See, the odd thing about this, and based on a few minutes checking out Melbourne real estate agent websites, is it costs about the same to buy an entry level apartment in the city in Canberra, as it does in Melbourne.

In fact, I saw one rather nicely renovated freestanding townhouse in North Melbourne, with city views, that was priced at about $750K from memory. Good luck finding a similarly specced and priced property within walking distance of the city in our fair town.

It would be Canberra’s higher than normal average wage that pushes us a bit further down the list I suspect. Which, when gauging affordability for a city’s residents, is fair enough, I guess!

rosscoact 2:14 pm 24 Jan 11

I agree, the actual story is that Canberra is equal 21st least affordable city but if you say it like that in the slightly hysterical shreiking tone employed by some sections of the old and new media, it just don’t work

tommy 2:10 pm 24 Jan 11

The report is based on a rather simplistic approach using only a couple statistics. You get strange results like Alice Springs for example as it has a low average income. They only look strange if you have local knowledge.

If you read the report and look into the most “affordable” location which is Saginaw, MI, USA it’s not really good news. The city of Saginaw is spending over $17 million buying abandoned foreclosed properties because they are falling apart and noone will buy them even at rock bottom bank foreclosure prices. The city hopes to rebuild new houses and sell at subsidised rates – yeah that’s sustainable:

http://www.mlive.com/news/saginaw/index.ssf/2010/08/saginaw_begins_buying_foreclos.html

Stanhope will spin with page 15 figure 2 saying that since his benign rule ACT has improved it’s unaffordability and has improved it ahead of other capital cities.

beejay76 1:40 pm 24 Jan 11

Given that Burnie, Wagga Wagga and Bendigo are less affordable than Canberra, we’re not doing too badly! In fact, from what I can see, the only capital city more affordable than us is Hobart.

In the interests of transparency, I must confess that I’m from Sydney. To my eyes Canberra seems like a golden city of cheap housing (9.6 plays 5.6)!

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