Adelaide Bank and the Real Estate Institute of Australia released its March quarter Housing Affordability Report on 6 June.
The report shows that on a national level, it’s become less affordable to rent but more affordable to buy a home, with the portion of income needed to meet average rental payments increasing to 24.8% in the March quarter. The portion of income needed to meet average loan repayments decreased by 0.3 percentage points to 31.3%.
In the ACT, housing affordability and rental affordability both declined slightly compared to the previous quarter (less than half a per cent), but we had the largest annual increase in the number of new loans to home buyers.
Compared to the rest of Australia, our portion of income required to meet home loan repayments or rental repayments is still the lowest in the country, sitting at 19.7% and 18.5% respectively (an almost insignificant gap).
We remain, on average, the most prosperous place to live in Australia – with a median weekly family income almost $1000 a week higher than the national average.
We’ve also had a significant increase in first home buyers when compared to the same time last year.
Darren Kasehagen, Head of Distribution, Adelaide Bank said “The improvement in housing affordability nationally is to be welcomed and it is great to see that when compared to the corresponding quarter of 2017, the number of first home buyers has increased in all states and territories year on year and by more than 80% in NSW and the ACT.”
Bryan Dacey, Mobile Relationship Manager for Canberra Community Bank Group (which manages four Bendigo Community Bank® branches in Canberra), says “An increase in first home buyers of over 80% in the past year is a testament to the availability of housing in the ACT, and confidence in our housing market.
“The scrapping of stamp duty for many first home buyers will further fuel first home buyer purchasing. And, if initiatives such as the First Home Super Saver Scheme remain, we should see buyers able to purchase their first home earlier and easier than ever before.”
Bryan says that sometimes it’s a fear of the unknown that prevents people from purchasing their first home.
“Bendigo’s Own Your Happy Place campaign is great for first home buyers, to help cast light on the buying process. Your bank doesn’t have to be the place where you just ‘get money’. Your bank should be a source of valuable information and support. For example, at Bendigo Bank, we will happily walk our customers through how to apply for concessional grants, how to determine what they can safely afford to borrow, and what happens across the entire purchasing process.
“Another benefit to first home buyers is that they can often access benefits such as no loan establishment fees and very low interest rates – which Bendigo Bank offers, in addition to great rates for ‘next’ home buyers as well.”
If you’re thinking of buying your first home, Bryan recommends using a Home Loan and Mortgage calculator as a starting point, to see if it’s achievable for you.
To chat with Bryan about your options, including for first home buyers or those seeking to use the equity in an existing home, call him on 0435 532 740.
To learn more about banking with a local community bank, pop into any one of the Canberra Community Bank branches in:
Curtin: 1/20 Curtin Place, Curtin. Ph: 6260 5140
Jerrabomberra: 2a/2 Limestone Dr, Jerrabomberra. Ph: 6299 8357
Wanniassa: Wanniassa Shopping Centre, Sangster Place. Ph: 6231 9024
Calwell: Calwell Shopping Centre, Webber Crescent. Ph: 6291 3385
Do you feel lucky to live in Canberra? What’s your take on our current housing affordability?
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