The challenges facing residential prices

After five years of stunning price growth, Australian residential property prices have just fallen for the eleventh month in a row according to a recent report from Core Logic. Here are four of the key reasons.

  1. Tougher lending criteria. Sure, a more rigorous assessment of loan applications reduces the number of risky loans, but it’s also squeezing the availability of credit. This means people come to auctions with less money to pay for the same houses. Do the math.
  2. Supply: There’s lots of new stock on the market and plenty of options: less price pressure.
  3. Rates: While rates will stay pretty flat for a while yet they’re more likely to go up than down.
  4. Buyer’s market: The market is swinging towards buyers. Sellers who want to get out while the going’s still good are accommodating this.

Predicting property prices was probably invented to make astrology look good, but a report from CBA economist Gareth Aird boldly predicts a national price fall of 3.25% this year with another 2.25% in the barrel for 2019. It also expects Sydney and Melbourne to be hit even harder, which seems fair, given their growth since 2012.

If you’ve been waiting for prices to drop to buy your first property or an investment, now may be a good time. Talk to your broker who can look at your current situation and what loan could work for you.