Finance advice

FHB error could aggravate investor lending issue

By Staff Reporter

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has admitted a 26 per cent error in its first home buyer statistics, potentially adding fuel to the regulator’s concerns about investor lending.

A new reporting method, announced by the ABS last week, revealed there are 26 per cent more first home buyers in the market than had been previously claimed.

The latest housing finance figures had put the number of FHB loan commitments at 6,061 as of November 2014.

However, the revised figures put the number of commitments at 7,627, up 26 per cent.

The ABS has released an information paper detailing changes to its method of estimating loans to first home buyers.

This follows the ABS investigation of the accuracy of estimates for FHB loans.

The investigation revealed a degree of under-reporting by some lenders on loans to first home buyers. This was because some lenders were not including figures for first home buyers who did not receive first home owner grants.

"The ABS has published first home buyer loan figures since the early 1990s, and initially we thought the fall-off in first home buyer loans over the last two years was due to reduced affordability arising from changes in grants, rising house prices, increased investment housing loan activity and general economic conditions,” ABS spokesperson Jacky Hodges said.

"However, subsequent analysis and follow-up with lenders has confirmed that the drop was partly due to under-reporting by some lenders,” Ms Hodges said.

Mortgage industry figures have speculated that the true number of first home buyers in the market actually includes a high proportion of investors.

Mortgage broker AFG's state manager for NSW and the ACT, Stephen Doyle, said at a recent industry roundtable that young people are now seeking an investment property rather than an owner-occupied home.

"They live in their parents' five-bedroom home into their late 20s, they drive their parents' BMW, their first home is an investment property. I don't think they want to live in what they can afford," he said.

Mortgage manager Firstmac’s Kim Cannon told Smart Property Investment's sister publication, The Adviser, that while the last three generations of Australians have wanted to own their own home, times have changed.

“I just don’t think the next generation want to move to the suburbs, 50 kilometres from the city,” Mr Cannon said.

“They don’t want to live in Penrith. They want to rent in Strathfield and maybe buy an investment property out in KingswoodKingswood, NSW Kingswood, NSW Kingswood, SA or somewhere like that and rent it to somebody who works and lives out that way."

The ABS is working with the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority - which collects the first home buyer loan data for the ABS - to ensure all loans to first home buyers are recorded in the future, regardless of whether they receive a first home owner grant or not.

In the meantime, the ABS will adjust first home buyer data for this under-reporting using estimates based on data provided by lenders that reported correctly.

An ABS information paper describes the findings of the investigation, the new methodology and the extent of revisions as well as providing updated spreadsheets of previously published first home buyer statistics.

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  string(72) "Mortgages in a tighter lending economy and why Brisbane is a good option"
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Tune in to the latest episode of Property Showcase, the podcast with the inside track on the products and businesses that will help turbocharge your portfolio, maximise returns and make your overall investment experience seamless and stress-free!

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To hear more about these services, make sure to tune in to this episode of Property Showcase!

 Make sure you never miss an episode by subscribing to us now on iTunes!

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Son Pham is the accredited Head of Mortgages at Rethink Financing\/Rethink Investing. He has over 6 years\u2019 experience writing loans, over 12 years in the wealth management industry working for the likes of CBA, AMP and private practice and he is also a licenced financial planner (AFSL 326450). He has multiple investment properties that are cash flow positive which help pay his mortgage on his home and fund his lifestyle.<\/p>\r\n

Son is able to write all types of residential and commercial property loans.<\/p>\r\n

In this episode of Property Showcase, head of mortgages at Rethink investing Son Pham joins host Tim Neary to unpack how an investor should approach getting a mortgage in place with banks tightening down on serviceability.<\/p>\r\n

Hear from\u00a0Son\u00a0about:\u00a0<\/p>\r\n

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    In this episode of Property Showcase, director of investment services for Open Corp Michael Beresford,\u00a0joins\u00a0editor of Real Estate, Tim Neary to share why he disagrees that the cooling market means that the best times are behind us.<\/p>\r\n

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Will Magee has had ambitions to enter into the Australian property market for quite some time, but it has been more than just finances holding him back.  Having been granted permanent residency just two weeks ago, Will is wasting no time and is now in the process of signing papers and finding his first investment property.

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Will joins host Phil Tarrant to share why he is purchasing his first property in partnership with his brother, discuss the complications that can arise from such a strategy, and unpack the ongoing plan for building a joint property portfolio with his brother.

Will will also share how they approached saving for their first property, why he is taking out the mortgage in his name exclusively, and share their savings plan for the year ahead.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected]estment.com.au for more insights!

RELATED AREAS OF INTEREST:

From property in Australia to a ski lodge in Japan
Mortgage Trusts, an alternative first step for property investors
Should a real estate title be in one person’s name only?

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A property investment plan years in the making
object(stdClass)#1211 (52) {
  ["id"]=>
  string(5) "18287"
  ["title"]=>
  string(75) "Regional Victoria showing up Melbourne in price performance, new data finds"
  ["alias"]=>
  string(74) "regional-victoria-showing-up-melbourne-in-price-performance-new-data-finds"
  ["introtext"]=>
  string(139) "

Median house prices in regional Victoria outperformed that of Melbourne in the June quarter, the latest REIV figures reveal. 

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Median house prices in the regions rose 4.0 per cent to $419,500 but in Melbourne they dipped by 0.6 of a percentage point to $840,000.

The result in Melbourne was due to a 0.8 of a percentage point fall in prices achieved at auction; this was despite a lift of 2.3 per cent in private sales.

Inner Melbourne suffered due to auction prices, where median prices fell by 4.9 per cent to $1,459,000 but it was middle Melbourne that was hardest hit, with a 5.4 per cent drop to $974,500.

Outer Melbourne had a good quarter with the median rising by 0.5 of a percentage point to $681,000.

Apartment prices in regional Victoria grew by 3.7 per cent to $304,500 while the metro media was up by 0.5 of a percentage point to $604,000.

REIV President Richard Simpson said that despite fewer sales, many sectors of the market were performing well.

“2017 was a bumper year and while the trendline has flattened, despite the fall in median house prices in the June quarter, median prices are still up this calendar year for both houses and units, in Melbourne and in the regions,” Mr Simpson said. 

In particular there was been strong growth in regional centres which is probably due to the first-home buyers’ concessions said Mr Simpsons.

“The first-home buyers’ concession has been a boon for regional areas. A new entrant to the property market buying a house at the regional median will pay no stamp duty, while a first home buyer of an apartment in Melbourne at the median price would pay stamp duty of nearly $25,000,” he said.

Mr Simpson said that more prospective buyers are looking towards regional Victoria which is also having an effect in Melbourne.

“Melbourne’s outer perimeter continues to grow. Small increases in the June quarter mean that the median prices for both houses and units have risen over 10.5 per cent from a year ago.

Mr Simpson said moving forward that vendors need more realistic expectations as the highs of 2017 are now over.

“Negative chatter about the future of the sector coupled with stronger lending controls by financial institutions has created some uncertainty and vendors need to be realistic with their price expectations,” Mr Simpson said.

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Regional Victoria showing up Melbourne in price performance, new data finds

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