Housing shortages, foreign investors mean high prices for years
Property developer Stockland has just held its annual general meeting and predicts continued growth and high prices for years to come. Announcing strong growth in the September quarter with a record number of deposits for properties, Stockland chairman Graham Bradley predicted a very strong outlook for the market and said that there was a supply backlog of about 60,000 homes. He said that there is an increase in foreign investors buying land in city cores and proposing high rise apartment blocks, but they are also interested in suburban developments, which he says is a relatively new thing. With new transit links from the city to the suburbs in Sydney he predicts more popular development on the fringes.
                               
Housing bubble fears as first-timers are frozen out
The boss of western-Sydney developers Perich Group says he is worried about a housing bubble and the current lack of affordability for first-time buyers. Tony Perich says that foreign investors are pushing up prices and notes that first-time buyers should be first in line for new property but they’re not. Speaking to The Australian Perich says his firm is trying to keep prices as low as possible but warns that many areas are getting too expensive.
 
Surging stamp duty underpins budget results
A continued rise in stamp duty receipts underlines the importance of the property industry in NSW – but also reinforces the case for tax reform, according to the Property Council of Australia. Increased stamp duty receipts are a central feature of the final results for the 2013-14 State Budget released this week. The PCA’s NSW executive director Glenn Byres says: “The property industry generates one in 10 jobs in NSW, pays over $16 billion in wages to workers and contributes over one-third of the State’s tax revenue. There is no doubt a mood of optimism in the market right now and home approvals are at their highest for a decade. But we need to be wary of the continued dependence on stamp duty.”
 
Melbourne land sales showing strength
New figures suggest that land sales in Melbourne are gaining in pace but not in price. The National Land Survey Program shows that the median price for land in the city was $203,000 in September, based on 1080 lots sold. With many greenfield sites available in Melbourne’s suburbs the supply has kept prices steady but the number of sales is at a 4 year high. It’s now expected that there will be plenty of new housing supply in the coming years. Land sales elsewhere in the country are generally higher although the slowdown in mining in WA has led to a decline there.
 

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