Housing outlook remains strong

Posted: 21 February 2018 11:35 am

house graph flatFirst home buyers are set to pick up the slack from investors.

The Housing Industry Association's (HIA) National Outlook for 2018 has forecast a strong year for housing in spite of a slowdown in construction.

"The boom in apartment building has already started to calm, but with population growth remaining high, buoyed by strong overseas migration, we expect that demand for housing will remain at elevated levels for the next few years," HIA principal economist Tim Reardon said.

Reardon said a slowdown in investor activity due to "punitive taxes and regulatory imposts" could be offset by rising first home buyer demand spurred on by government incentives.

Learn more about stamp duty incentives for first home buyers

"Government interventions into the market recently include state governments imposing punitive stamp duty charges on foreign buyers, Federal charges for foreign purchasers, a new set of visa rules that could slow overseas migration, restricting lending to domestic investors and new regulations limiting interest-only lending," Reardon said.

While Reardon said building activity would decline modestly, he predicted this would bottom out in 2019 "with activity still at old levels".

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