Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Perth is back to 2012 house prices

Perth house prices have dropped 8.5% in two years and the median house price is back to what it was in September 2012. In those five years, Sydney house prices shot up 75% and Melbourne went up 51%. So is now a time to buy? 

Monday, September 11, 2017

LIar Loans are a $500b problem in Australia

UBS has today expressed concern that up to a third of Australian mortgages could have been granted based on falsified information. They surveyed 900 borrowers last year and found only 67% of responders said that their mortgage was completely factual and accurate. 37% of those getting a loan via a broker said that it was the broker's suggestion to falsify parts of their application. Where people have set up previous loans, 46% found it easier to get their most recent loan compared to previously.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Corelogic shows 0/9% drop in Perth House prices in August

Now is the time to buy. That's what you will hear as the conclusion of the most recent announcement that Perth prices have dropped yet again in August. For a real estate agent, NOW is ALWAYS the time to buy. House prices have dropped 0.9% according to CoreLogic and 0.6% for units. Perth has slipped 2.6% in 2017 with Perth joining Sydney (0.1% drop) and Darwin (3% drop) while Melbourne soared 7.6% in the same period. 


RBA - rates on hold

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.
Conditions in the global economy are continuing to improve. Labour markets have tightened further and above-trend growth is expected in a number of advanced economies, although uncertainties remain. Growth in the Chinese economy is being supported by increased spending on infrastructure and property construction, with the high level of debt continuing to present a medium-term risk. Commodity prices have risen recently, although Australia's terms of trade are still expected to decline over coming years.
Wage growth remains low in most countries, as does core inflation. Headline inflation rates have declined recently, largely reflecting the earlier decline in oil prices. In the United States, the Federal Reserve expects to increase interest rates further and there is no longer an expectation of additional monetary easing in other major economies. Financial markets have been functioning effectively and volatility remains low.
The recent data have been consistent with the Bank's expectation that growth in the Australian economy will gradually pick up over the coming year. The decline in mining investment will soon run its course. The outlook for non-mining investment has improved recently and reported business conditions are at a high level. Residential construction activity remains at a high level, but little further growth is expected. Retail sales have picked up recently, although slow growth in real wages and high levels of household debt are likely to constrain future growth in spending.
Employment growth has been stronger over recent months and has increased in all states. The various forward-looking indicators point to solid growth in employment over the period ahead. The unemployment rate is expected to decline a little over the next couple of years.
Wage growth remains low. This is likely to continue for a while yet, although stronger conditions in the labour market should see some lift in wages growth over time. Inflation also remains low and is expected to pick up gradually as the economy strengthens.
The Australian dollar has appreciated over recent months, partly reflecting a lower US dollar. The higher exchange rate is expected to contribute to the subdued price pressures in the economy. It is also weighing on the outlook for output and employment. An appreciating exchange rate would be expected to result in a slower pick-up in economic activity and inflation than currently forecast.
Conditions in the housing market continue to vary considerably around the country. Housing prices have been rising briskly in some markets, although there are signs that conditions are easing, especially in Sydney. In some other markets, prices are declining. In the eastern capital cities, a considerable additional supply of apartments is scheduled to come on stream over the next couple of years. Rent increases remain low in most cities. Investors in residential property are facing higher interest rates. There has also been some tightening of credit conditions following supervisory measures to address the risks associated with high and rising levels of household indebtedness. Growth in housing debt has been outpacing the slow growth in household incomes.
The low level of interest rates is continuing to support the Australian economy. Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Rates steady as house prices drop, currrency up

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.
Conditions in the global economy are continuing to improve. Labour markets have tightened further and above-trend growth is expected in a number of advanced economies, although uncertainties remain. Growth in the Chinese economy has picked up a little and is being supported by increased spending on infrastructure and property construction, with the high level of debt continuing to present a medium-term risk. Commodity prices have generally risen recently, although Australia's terms of trade are still expected to decline over the period ahead.
Wage growth remains subdued in most countries, as does core inflation. Headline inflation rates have declined recently, largely reflecting the earlier decline in oil prices. In the United States, the Federal Reserve expects to increase interest rates further and there is no longer an expectation of additional monetary easing in other major economies. Financial markets have been functioning effectively and volatility remains low.
The Bank's forecasts for the Australian economy are largely unchanged. Over the next couple of years, the central forecast is for the economy to grow at an annual rate of around 3 per cent. The transition to lower levels of mining investment following the mining investment boom is almost complete, with some large LNG projects now close to completion. Business conditions have improved and capacity utilisation has increased. Some pick-up in non-mining business investment is expected. The current high level of residential construction is forecast to be maintained for some time, before gradually easing. One source of uncertainty for the domestic economy is the outlook for consumption. Retail sales have picked up recently, but slow growth in real wages and high levels of household debt are likely to constrain growth in spending.
Employment growth has been stronger over recent months, and has increased in all states. The various forward-looking indicators point to continued growth in employment over the period ahead. The unemployment rate is expected to decline a little over the next couple of years. Against this, however, wage growth remains low and this is likely to continue for a while yet.
The recent inflation data were broadly as the Bank expected. Both CPI inflation and measures of underlying inflation are running at a little under 2 per cent. Inflation is expected to pick up gradually as the economy strengthens. Higher prices for electricity and tobacco are expected to boost CPI inflation. A factor working in the other direction is increased competition from new entrants in the retail industry.
The Australian dollar has appreciated recently, partly reflecting a lower US dollar. The higher exchange rate is expected to contribute to subdued price pressures in the economy. It is also weighing on the outlook for output and employment. An appreciating exchange rate would be expected to result in a slower pick-up in economic activity and inflation than currently forecast.
Conditions in the housing market vary considerably around the country. Housing prices have been rising briskly in some markets, although there are some signs that these conditions are starting to ease. In some other markets, prices are declining. In the eastern capital cities, a considerable additional supply of apartments is scheduled to come on stream over the next couple of years. Rent increases remain low in most cities. Investors in residential property are facing higher interest rates. There has also been some tightening of credit conditions following recent supervisory measures to address the risks associated with high and rising levels of household indebtedness. Growth in housing debt has been outpacing the slow growth in household incomes.
The low level of interest rates is continuing to support the Australian economy. Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Perth Median House Price drops again

We've been seeing articles saying that now is a good time to buy in Perth. In that case, it just got better. In the June quarter, Perth has continued to see a drop in the median house price. According to Domain, the average house price is now $555,788 which is a 1.8% drop since April 2017 and closing in on a five year low. For units, the news is slightly better with a 1.1% increase in median price to $377,823. If you are a renter, the news has been very good over the past year. The median rent is now at $300 per week which is 10% less than a year ago in Perth.

Other markets around Australia fared better. In Sydney where the median house price is already twice the Perth median house price at $1,178,417, they experienced a 1.1% increase in the last three months, 12% over the year. Melbourne increased by 3.5% in three months and 15% over the year.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Walkers' Best Perth Suburbs

REIWA has released a report about the best suburbs for those that like walking around their neighbourhood and there are no real surprises. Whether you would walk around that suburb is another story. However, many of those suburbs are also the most expensive in Perth. Here they are

RankSuburbWalk Score
1Northbridge95
2Perth89
3Highgate87
4East Perth87
5West Perth87
6Subiaco86
7Crawley84
8Leederville83
9West Leederville81
10Nedlands79
11North Perth79
12Peppermint Grove78
13Victoria Park77
14Burswood77
15Jolimont75

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Cash rate left unchanged again - 1.5%

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.
There has been a broad-based pick-up in the global economy since last year. Labour markets have tightened further in many countries and forecasts for global growth have been revised up. Above-trend growth is expected in a number of advanced economies, although uncertainties remain. In China, growth is being supported by increased spending on infrastructure and property construction, with the high level of debt continuing to present a medium-term risk. The improvement in the global economy has contributed to higher commodity prices, which are providing a significant boost to Australia’s national income. Australia’s terms of trade have increased, although some reversal of this is occurring.
Headline inflation rates have moved higher in most countries, partly reflecting the higher commodity prices. Core inflation remains low. Long-term bond yields are higher than last year, although in a historical context they remain low. Interest rates have increased in the United States and there is no longer an expectation of additional monetary easing in other major economies. Financial markets have been functioning effectively.
The Bank’s forecasts for the Australian economy are little changed. Growth is expected to increase gradually over the next couple of years to a little above 3 per cent. The economy is continuing its transition following the end of the mining investment boom, with the drag from the decline in mining investment coming to an end and exports of resources picking up. Growth in consumption is expected to remain moderate and broadly in line with incomes. Non-mining investment remains low as a share of GDP and a stronger pick-up would be welcome.
Indicators of the labour market remain mixed. The unemployment rate has moved a little higher over recent months, but employment growth has been a little stronger. The various forward-looking indicators still point to continued growth in employment over the period ahead. The unemployment rate is expected to decline gradually over time. Wage growth remains slow and this is likely to remain the case for a while yet.
The outlook continues to be supported by the low level of interest rates. Lenders have announced increases in mortgage rates, particularly those paid by investors and on interest-only loans. The depreciation of the exchange rate since 2013 has also assisted the economy in its transition following the mining investment boom. An appreciating exchange rate would complicate this adjustment.
Inflation picked up to above 2 per cent in the March quarter in line with the Bank’s expectations. In underlying terms, inflation is running at around 1¾ per cent, a little higher than last year. A gradual further increase in underlying inflation is expected as the economy strengthens.
Conditions in the housing market continue to vary considerably around the country. Prices have been rising briskly in some markets and declining in others. In the eastern capital cities, a considerable additional supply of apartments is scheduled to come on stream over the next couple of years. Rent increases are the slowest for two decades. Growth in housing debt has outpaced the slow growth in household incomes. The recently announced supervisory measures should help address the risks associated with high and rising levels of indebtedness.
Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

2% cashback on Paypass with Bankwest Easy Transaction Account

Bankwest has joined the cashback game, attracting customers with 2% cashback on all their paypass transactions every month until 31 August 2017 when you sign up to their Easy Transaction Account. There are no monthly fees if you transfer $2000 or more into the account each month. You will also avoid ATM fees when using one of the other major banks' ATMs - CBA, NAB, ANZ, Westpac, St George Bank, Bank of Melbourne and Bank of SA. This is only available to those that do not have a Bankwest account, which probably eliminates most of the people in Perth. But if there is someone out there who can take advantage of this offer, go ahead. Hopefully this will spur on competitors to also bring in similar offers.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

RBA keeps cash rate at 1.50%

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.
Conditions in the global economy have improved over recent months. Both global trade and industrial production have picked up. Labour markets have tightened in many countries. Above-trend growth is expected in a number of advanced economies, although uncertainties remain. In China, growth is being supported by higher spending on infrastructure and property construction. This composition of growth and the rapid increase in borrowing mean that the medium-term risks to Chinese growth remain. The improvement in the global economy has contributed to higher commodity prices, which are providing a significant boost to Australia’s national income.
Headline inflation rates have moved higher in most countries, partly reflecting the higher commodity prices. Core inflation remains low. Long-term bond yields are higher than last year, although in a historical context they remain low. Interest rates have increased in the United States and there is no longer an expectation of additional monetary easing in other major economies. Financial markets have been functioning effectively.
The Australian economy is continuing its transition following the end of the mining investment boom. Recent data are consistent with ongoing moderate growth. Most measures of business confidence are at, or above, average and non-mining business investment has risen over the past year. At the same time, some indicators of conditions in the labour market have softened recently. In particular, the unemployment rate has moved a little higher and employment growth is modest. The various forward-looking indicators still point to continued growth in employment over the period ahead. Wage growth remains slow.
The outlook continues to be supported by the low level of interest rates. Lenders have recently announced increases in mortgage rates, particularly those paid by investors. Financial institutions remain in a good position to lend. The depreciation of the exchange rate since 2013 has also assisted the economy in its transition following the mining investment boom. An appreciating exchange rate would complicate this adjustment.
Inflation remains quite low. Headline inflation is expected to pick up over the course of 2017 to be above 2 per cent. The rise in underlying inflation is expected to be a bit more gradual with growth in labour costs remaining subdued.
Conditions in the housing market continue to vary considerably around the country. In some markets, conditions are strong and prices are rising briskly. In other markets, prices are declining. In the eastern capital cities, a considerable additional supply of apartments is scheduled to come on stream over the next couple of years. Growth in rents is the slowest for two decades.
Growth in household borrowing, largely to purchase housing, continues to outpace growth in household income. By reinforcing strong lending standards, the recently announced supervisory measures should help address the risks associated with high and rising levels of indebtedness. Lenders need to ensure that the serviceability metrics that they use are appropriate for current conditions. A reduced reliance on interest-only housing loans in the Australian market would also be a positive development.
Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time.

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