Houses getting more affordable

Adam Smith 13 April 2016

Houses getting more affordable

Housing affordability has seen an improvement over the first three months of the year.

New figures from the Housing Industry Association show a 2.7% improvement for housing affordability for the March quarter. Capital city house prices were 4.1% more affordable for the quarter, while regional markets saw a modest 0.1% improvement.

“The national median dwelling price fell during the March 2016 quarter and this was the main factor behind the improvement in affordability during the first quarter of the year,” HIA senior economist Shane Garrett said.

Garrett said that the improvement in affordability would have been even more pronounced if not for variable rate increases late last year. He said weak earnings growth also hampered the improvement in affordability.

“At the end of the day, the most durable way of improving affordability lies in facilitating the supply of affordable new housing more effectively. Planning delays, land supply shortages and the heavy tax burden are all making the achievement of housing affordability much more difficult,” Garrett said.

The biggest improvement in affordability across capital cities was in Sydney, where housing affordability improved by 8.9%. Affordability also improved across Perth, Darwin, Hobart and Melbourne. Brisbane, Adelaide and Canberra, meanwhile, saw affordability worsen over the March quarter.

Source: HIA

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