Optimism still high on homebuyers despite rising prices.jpg

There remains substantial positivity among homebuyers towards the housing market this year despite a sense of being priced out.

A new study by the Real Estate Buyers Agents Association of Australia (REBAA) and Property Talk Australia (PTA) showed that more than half of Australian homebuyers (52%) still feel optimistic that they can break into the housing market.

While price gains across most states are now slowing down, Australia’s median dwelling price at $718,146 in February is still 22.4% higher than last year, according to CoreLogic.

REBAA president Cate Bakos said the strong buyer sentiment reflects the “sheer resilience” of the property market, which has been apparent since last year.

“2021 was a contradictory year for the Australian property market with the country witnessing boom conditions despite the fact that much of the nation was in lockdown for substantial periods of time,” Ms Bakos said.

In fact, around 40% of buyers was able to purchase last year despite the pandemic, up by 21% from the preceding year.

Meanwhile, more than half said the COVID-19 pandemic had no impact on their purchasing strategy.

Interestingly, around a third of those who were not able to purchase cited reasons of not being able to inspect due to lockdowns and interstate border restrictions.

So far, 20% of buyers who were able to inspect their target properties his year are still looking to buy.

Ms Bakos said there has been an increase in investor presence among buyers, particularly this year where 49% of already existing investors planning to get another slice of the property pie.

Where do they want to invest — a third of these buyers are looking to buy in Queensland.

“This is not surprising given Brisbane has been the second strongest performing property market in 2021,” she said.

“Of those looking to purchase in Queensland, 24% expect growth, 14% are attracted by the desirable lifestyle and 13% are investing for affordability.”

A survey by the Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA) late last year showed that around for 58% of all investors, Queensland has the best investment prospects among all states and territories.

This was also the findings of a report from the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA), which indicated that Queensland markets were among the best performers during the first six months of 2021.

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