Saturday, 14 February 2015

First home buyers still scarce on the ground

Latest ABS home loan data reports that first home buyers remain at or near historical lows.  This is despite recent changes by the ABS in the estimation process for this group designed to adjust perceived under-reporting of the series.

The home loan (excluding refinancing) national market share for first home buyers fell to 10 percent over December - the lowest proportion reported by the ABS series since April 2004.

New South Wales remains the clear underperformer of all the states with a market share for first home buyers of just 7.1 percent recorded over December. This is just above the all-time low recorded in June 2014 of 6.9 percent. 

First home buyer numbers however increased to 2000 over December – the highest monthly total since December 2013. Surging investors and strong changeover buyer activity combined to lower the market share of first home buyer despite the increase.  

High and rising prices in the booming Sydney market will continue to sideline local first home buyers over the foreseeable future who will nonetheless continue to trickle back into the market.

Dr Andrew Wilson is Domain Group Senior Economist Twitter@DocAndrewWilson