Finance advice

RBA announces April cash rate decision

By Charbel Kadib
RBA

The official cash rate for April has been announced by the Reserve Bank of Australia following its monthly board meeting.

The board has decided to hold the cash rate at its record low of 1.50 per cent, in a move predicted by most industry representatives.

Of the 32 surveyed respondents on the finder.com.au panel, 31 (97 per cent) correctly predicted the cash rate to remain unchanged.

The central bank has now kept the cash rate on hold for a record-breaking 18 consecutive months. RateCity’s money editor, Sally Tindall, said that she expects the record will continue to be broken.

“The record might be set, but the end isn’t near,” Ms Tindall said. “The Australian economy is stuck in neutral and Governor Philip Lowe’s hands are tied.”

Indeed, economist at Corinna Economic Advisory Saul Eslake predicted a hold verdict in finder’s survey, noting that “nothing has materially changed since the RBA last stated that current monetary policy settings were (in its opinion) appropriate”.

Mr Eslake said: “There’s been no new data on price or wage inflation, and the most recent labour force data suggests that the margin of spare capacity in the labour market remains unchanged, despite ongoing strong employment growth (because most of the new jobs are going to new entrants to the labour force).

“[The] RBA has repeatedly made it clear that it feels under no pressure to follow other central banks in hiking rates.”

However, the managing director of 1300 Home Loan, John Kolenda, said he believes that global market conditions could prompt lenders to increase rates regardless of the RBA’s decision.

“While the RBA looks like keeping its cash rate on hold, there are some lenders facing increases in the cost of their wholesale funding which they blame on the impact of US economic policies,” Mr Kolenda said.

“They have already lifted rates for business loans and have warned they may have to also pass on these increases to home loans.”

Associate professor at Monash University Mark Crosby was the only panellist in the finder survey to predict a rate move, claiming that the case for a rate rise was “very strong”.

Conversely, managing director of Market Economics Stephen Koukoulas urged the RBA to drop the cash rate.

“The RBA is unable to get away from its obsession with non-existent financial instability. It should be cutting rates,” Mr Koukoulas said.

In all, 83 per cent of surveyed panellists said that they expected the next rate move to be up. However, a majority (56 per cent) noted that rate hikes could have an adverse effect on borrowers, causing some mortgage holders to default on their loans.

Thirty-nine per cent of panellists claimed that two cash rate increases could be enough to trigger mortgage defaults for borrowers at the “risky” end of the spectrum, while a further 17 per cent said that just one rate increase could put borrowers in a precarious position.

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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] 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
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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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  ["introtext"]=>
  string(381) "

If Mark Hodge’s face looks familiar to you it could be because of his time working as a professional entertainer which saw him working with the Australian ballet, appearing on multiple seasons of Dancing with the Stars and touring in musical theatre for 17 years. What you may not know is that Mark is also heavily involved in the short-term property rental marketspace.

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Mark joins host Phil Tarrant to discuss his transition from entertainer to investor, a journey pushed forward by dance related injuries and even a hit and run which saw him needing to find alternate methods to bring in an income. Mark shares how bad long-term tenants and a gang member guided him to the short-term rental market, and how this pushed him into helping others to realise the same benefits.

Mark will also address the common concerns, discuss what his company Maisonnets specialise in and unpack how they are making the process of filling short term rentals easier for investors.

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:

The hard-to-swallow truth: The prickly points of the Airbnb reforms
Airbnb reforms unpacked for property investors
Airbnb leasing: What are a landlord’s rights and responsibilities? 


AREAS MENTIONED:

Melbourne
Sydney
Rushcutters Bay
Maroubra
Potts Point

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From pirouettes to property investment

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