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Most Aussies feel homeownership is out of reach


house price tag1Two-thirds of Australians believe homeownership is only within the grasp of the wealthy, a new survey has found.

The survey, conducted by Mortgage Choice and CoreData, found that 63.2% of Australians agreed with the statement “only people with a lot of money can hope to achieve the Australian Dream” of owning a home. The vast majority of respondents, 87%, said that the dream of home ownership was becoming “increasingly difficult”.

“This finding is not surprising, considering that property prices have grown faster than wages,” Mortgage Choice CEO John Flavell said.

“According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Wage Price Index, wages grew 12.6% between March 2012 and March 2017. Meanwhile, data from CoreLogic found that property values across the combined capital cities rose 21.86% over the same time period.”

Flavell said that rising prices meant that home buying preferences were evolving to include apartments.

“According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 52,000 apartments were approved for construction in 2011. By 2016, that number had jumped to over 100,000, proving that apartments are becoming an increasingly popular property option amongst Australians,” he said.

The study also found that Australians were willing to make sacrifices to enter the property market. 31% of respondents said that they had reduced their spending to save for a deposit, while 24% decided to buy a smaller property and 20% said that they would purchase with friends or family.

“In addition, 6% looked for financial assistance from their parents, 5% moved back home to save and another 3% chose to ‘rent-vest’.”

Flavell called recent efforts to ease affordability, such as changes to stamp duty in New South Wales, “steps in the right direction”, but said that more needed to be done.

“If we are to truly address the issue of housing affordability, we need our state and federal governments to look beyond grants and tax breaks and start looking at the root cause: lack of appropriate supply together with appropriate infrastructure investment.”

Image: Shutterstock

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