Editor's Note: January 2014
Tick, tick, tick…
As we predicted 12 months ago, 2013 was indeed the year of recovery. With interest rates falling to historical lows and confidence improving, that recovery is set to build momentum in 2014, possibly making it the ‘boom’ year of this property cycle in many major cities.
There’s already a buying frenzy in pockets of some capital cities, namely Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
The country’s largest mortgage brokerage, Australian Finance Group, recorded its best month ever in October, processing more than $4 billion worth of home loans – 12 per cent higher than the previous month and a staggering 61 per cent higher than October 2011, just before the Reserve Bank began cutting rates.
And while first homebuyers accounted for only 12.5 per cent of all housing loans in September, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (the lowest reading in 23 years), home loan approvals overall were the highest since October 2009.
Economists are describing the property sector as the “shining light” of the nation’s economy, with housing expected to take the baton from the mining industry as the country’s key economic driver. Some of the most attractive buying conditions we’ve seen in years have combined with post-election confidence to bring a new energy to the marketplace, with some remarkable sales results being achieved.
However, it’s worth noting that the market recovery is different this time. Self-managed superannuation funds are increasingly being used to purchase residential real estate, there’s more activity from Asian buyers and interest rates are at a new low.
If you define a boom as being double-digit price growth, then we’re not there yet. Much of the growth in many areas has simply gone towards restoring prices to pre-GFC levels.
It’s never a bad time to buy, even if the market is heating up, as long as there’s merit to your investment decision that goes beyond the ‘fear of missing out’. Knowledge is the key.
It’s our aim every month to bring you the latest information on the opportunities that are presenting themselves to investors, regardless of whether the market is hot, cold or lukewarm.
On page 20 you’ll find an exclusive report on new rezonings which are creating profitable opportunities for the small developer and don’t miss our special report on page 82 about one of Australia’s largest ever infrastructure projects and the areas set to reap the rewards.
API also aims to inspire, and this month’s cover story on investors under 30 creating property wealth of their own does just that. You can read their strategies and tips on page 40.Enjoy!