Finance advice

APRA claims property prices have signalled risk for ‘some time’

By James Mitchell
Property prices, countercyclical buffers, property management, property market, house prices

The regulator believes it can successfully cool house prices and contain risk without relying on countercyclical buffers.

Speaking at the Actuaries Institute Banking Seminar in Sydney on Thursday (7 December), APRA’s executive general manager - policy and advice division, Pat Brennan, said that the countercyclical buffer could still be used if lending standards deteriorate and credit growth becomes excessive.

APRA has not yet used the countercyclical capital buffer in response to risks within the banking system.

“That does not mean we would never plan to do so,” Mr Brennan said. “In short, the countercyclical capital buffer provides a tool that can be used to raise banking sector capital requirements in periods of excess credit growth associated with the build-up of systemic risk. This additional buffer can then be released during periods of stress to reduce the risk of the supply of credit being hindered by regulatory capital requirements.”

The buffer came into effect from January 2016 as part of Basel III, but APRA has chosen to use other tools, such as limits on investor and interest-only mortgage lending, to control risks in the system.

The buffer can be set between zero and a maximum of 2.5 per cent of risk-weighted assets. APRA set it at 0 per cent at the end of 2015 and this remains unchanged.

APRA has chosen nine core indicators that provide a signal of systemic risk, including house price growth and commercial property growth.

Interestingly, APRA chairman Wayne Byres has repeatedly stressed that “housing prices are not within the control, nor the mandate, of the prudential regulator”.

Nevertheless, Mr Brennan this week warned that trends in property prices have been signalling heightened risks “for some time”.

“On their own, however, they do not suggest the need to institute the countercyclical buffer at this point,” the executive said. “Rather, APRA has chosen to tackle these risks with other tools. In housing lending, this includes our benchmarks on investor and interest-only lending as well as substantial supervisory work to improve serviceability standards.

Mr Brennan said that the countercyclical capital buffer is designed to reinforce the resilience of the banking system in response to excessive credit growth.

“Certainly, credit growth has been a key factor in our supervisory concerns in relation to housing,” Mr Brennan added.

APRA’s decision not to use the countercyclical buffer and instead resort to lending curbs has led to tightened policies and higher rates for borrowers.

The regulator expects growth in credit to be supported in the near term by, among other things, the settlement of a significant supply of apartments due to hit the market in the eastern capital cities in the coming months.

“However, working in the other direction is the impact of higher home loan rates and tighter lending standards, which may see some marginal borrowers finding it more difficult to access credit, particularly for investor and interest-only products,” Mr Brennan said.

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A softening market can be a difficult time for a property investor with finance approval tightening and property capital growth slowing, and while many real estate agents are also feeling the squeeze McGrath Brighton Le Sands' Bill Tsounias claims it is simply the market returning to normal.

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Bill joins host Phil Tarrant to share his thoughts on the current Sydney property market, and to share the shifts that he has seen in house and unit sale prices following their worst quarter in the past decade.

Bill will unpack why properties are spending longer on market, share what he believes property investors are doing wrong when trying to sell their properties and share the secrets to getting the best out of a real estate agent and an auction in the current softening market.

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] for more insights!

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AREAS MENTIONED:

Revesby
South Hurstville
Sans Souci
Strathfield

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Gavin Kemp and his now-fiancé bought their first property together after only six months of dating. They weren’t even living together at the time. Now, two years on, the pair have bought five properties, sold two and have a solid plan in place for their ongoing property journey. 

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Gavin joins host Phil Tarrant to discuss how he chose the locations where he decided to invest and how, due to the initial lack of education (something that he now values highly), he lost money on his first two investments.

Gavin will share his thoughts on the current property market, reveal the people who he has leaned on throughout his property journey and discuss why his strategy employs a zero procrastination rule.

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] for more insights!

RELATED AREAS OF INTEREST:

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AREAS MENTIONED:

Redcliffe
Port Macquarie
Loganlea
Launceston
Raceview

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A joint property portfolio before they were even living together
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As the investment market tightens are you looking to learn something that will help you realign or readjust your property goals? In this episode of The Smart Property Investment Show, first time on the podcast Lisa Porter joins host Phil Tarrant to talk about the gems and wisdom associated with her modest portfolio of ‘only’ six properties.

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Listen now as Lisa and host Phil Tarrant discuss how her property journey started in the UK, with the purchase of a rough unit in a lower-socio suburb of South London. Lisa breaks down how that first purchase provided her greatest lesson, one she still applies today - turn off the noise, don’t worry too much about the peripheries and just get on with it.

The pair also discuss how property has given Lisa so much extra value in her life, not just building an asset base and heaps of enjoyment, but it also how it changed the trajectory of her career. Women, she says, shouldn’t be fearful of being proactive and taking control of the direction of their family’s financial future.  

 

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] for more insights!

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How WA, the NT, SA and Tasmania are currently performing



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Walking and talking property investment with Lisa Porter – therapy, empowerment, education and inspiration

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