Posted in: Insights


Mortgage lending went down in January indicating that the wetter than average weather wasn't enough to stop Australians from taking holidays.

Newly released figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show that demand for mortgages dipped 1.2 per cent in the first month of the year on a seasonally-adjusted basis.

But rather than indicating a nation-wide trend or fall in the new home loan market, it seems that most experts believe the results are at odds with a ten-month upwards swing which saw more people buying homes.

The ABC reports that buyers in along the east coast of Australia such as New South Wales and Queensland were busy counting their pennies after the Christmas break.

In NSW, there was a 6.3 per cent drop in housing approvals which was well above the national average - a result that was not reflected in the lending rates from any other state or territory.

Annette Beacher, head of Asia-Pacific research at TD Securities, said that the interest rate cut has yet to come into full effect and may turn current results on their head.

"It will be interesting to see the February outcome, as that month saw the non-RBA ten basis point increase to most mortgage rates by the banks," she explained.

Ms Beacher also made it clear that there are definite signs the market is being revived.

Victoria and South Australia still have some of the strongest housing and rental markets in the country, with a narrower gap between supply and demand that other regions.

According to RP Data Melbourne and Adelaide are both leading the way when it comes to affordable housing and rental prices.

The organisation reports that home units have seen strong price growth in these cities and are up 5.5 per cent - which is attracting the eye of both local and interstate investors.