investors have joined the stampede of buyers rushing housing markets: Archistar's Andrew Wilson

investors have joined the stampede of buyers rushing housing markets: Archistar's Andrew Wilson
investors have joined the stampede of buyers rushing housing markets: Archistar's Andrew Wilson

EXPERT INSIGHT

Investors have clearly now joined the stampede of buyers rushing housing markets, but the overall home loan market share of investors remains at record low levels, offsetting any concerns by the RBA and financial regulators of potential market disruption.

The ABS reports that the value of national investor lending seasonally adjusted increased by 9.4% over January to $6.4bn which is the highest monthly total recorded since May 2018.

Despite the sharp increase, the overall home loan market share of investors fell to a new record low 19.1% and well behind the long-term average of 33.1%. Recent growth in investor lending still lags the remarkable increases reported by owner-occupiers and first home buyers.

During the similar strong market conditions in 2014, investor market share exceeded 40% which resulted in actions by financial regulators to subdue activity from this group. 

This reflected concerns that record levels of highly-leveraged investors may cause disruptions to housing markets in the event of an increase in official interest rates pushing down home prices.

WA reported the sharpest increase in monthly investor lending over the past year, rising by 47.2%, followed by QLD up 26.7%, NSW up 17.9% and SA up 0.4%. Monthly investor lending in VIC however fell 1.0% over the past year.

NSW accounted for the most investor activity over January with 40.9% of total national activity with $2.21bn in loans approved followed by VIC well behind with $1.47bn, QLD $0.89bn, WA $0.34bn and SA $0.24bn.

The average NSW investor loan reported over January was the highest of all the states at $658,900 followed by VIC 537,388, QLD $441,037, WA $411,649 and SA $368,232.

Although investor lending is on the rise, the overall residential loan market share remains at record low levels with current strong prices growth clearly driven by unprecedented owner-occupier lending activity.

Any misguided move to raise interest rates to quell strong buyer activity would clearly place in jeopardy the current fragile and nascent economic recovery – something the RBA has clearly acknowledged.”

Dr Andrew Wilson is the chief economist at Archistar

Andrew Wilson

Andrew Wilson

Andrew Wilson is the senior economist for Australian Property Monitors.

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Property Investors Investor Activity

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