Lending figures confirm a continuing increase in owner occupier activity

January 15th,2016

The latest housing finance figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show a continued increase in owner occupier lending and a decline in investor activity.

The Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) says the figures for November 2015 show, in trend terms that the number of owner-occupied finance commitments increased by 0.8 per cent. This increase is the same as for the previous two months. If refinancing is excluded, in trend terms for November, the number of owner-occupied finance commitments increased by 0.5 per cent – the seventeenth consecutive month of increases.

REIA President, Neville Sanders said “increases were recorded in all states except Western Australia and Queensland with the Northern Territory having the largest increase of 2.9 per cent. The largest decrease was recorded in Western Australia – down 0.4 per cent.”

“In trend terms, the number of new dwellings purchase commitments increased by 0.4 per cent while new dwelling construction increased by 1.1 per cent and the purchase of established dwellings increased by 0.8 per cent.”

“The value of investment housing commitments decreased by 2.9 per cent in trend terms. This is the sixth consecutive month of falling investor lending and the lowest monthly figure for the twelve months to November 2015 showing that the macro prudential measures and falling rental returns are having an impact on investor activity.”

“The proportion of first home buyers, as part of the total owner-occupied housing finance commitments, decreased to 14.9 per cent compared to 15.0 per cent in October and is the lowest since June 2004.”

“The lending figures show that owner occupiers continue to have a greater presence in the stabilising market,” concluded Mr Sanders.

The Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) is the national professional association for real estate agents in Australia.

For further information or interview opportunities, please contact:
Neville Sanders  REIA President  0419 592 365
Elizabeth Ley       Administrative Officer   02 6282 4277

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