Powered by momentummedia
nestegg logo
Powered by momentummedia
nestegg logo
nestegg logo

 

 

Invest

Residential home values could fall

  • March 23 2020
  • Share

Invest

Residential home values could fall

By Cameron Micallef
March 23 2020

Residential property prices could decline by as much as 20 per cent as the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic leads to a material rise in unemployment, financial institutions have suggested.

Residential home values could fall

Residential home values could fall

author image
  • March 23 2020
  • Share

Residential property prices could decline by as much as 20 per cent as the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic leads to a material rise in unemployment, financial institutions have suggested.

Residential home values could fall

According to AMP, the fallout from the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has sparked significant uncertainty in domestic and global markets, with analysts expecting the drop in confidence to filter through to the housing market.

AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver said Australia’s economy is headed towards recession, with negative GDP growth forecast for at least the March and June quarters.

Mr Oliver’s base case is for the recession to push the unemployment rate to 7.5 per cent, which he said would trigger a 5 per cent decline in residential dwelling values.

But Mr Oliver warned that a “deeper recession” with a 10 per cent unemployment rate could spark a fall in residential dwelling values of up to 20 per cent.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The AMP economist said that in such a scenario, a 20 per cent fall in property prices would be predominantly caused by high household exposure to debt, which he described as Australia’s “Achilles’ heel”.

“The surge in prices relative to incomes (and rents) over the last two decades has gone hand in hand with a surge in household debt relative to income that has taken Australia from the low end of OECD countries to the high end,” he said.

Chronic undersupply to offset falls

Mr Oliver said a supply and demand imbalance in the housing market would help offset a coronavirus-induced decline in property prices.

“[The] property market has been chronically undersupplied. Annual population growth since mid-last decade has averaged 373,000 people compared to 217,000 over the decade to 2005, which requires roughly an extra 75,000 homes per year,” he said.

“Unfortunately, the supply of dwellings did not keep pace with the population surge, so a massive shortfall built up, driving high home prices.

“Thanks to the surge in unit supply since 2015, this has been reduced, but capital city vacancy rates are still around their long-term average, indicating a lack of oversupply, although Sydney may be more at risk.”

Moreover, Mr Oliver said that household balance sheets have proven to be fairly resilient to economic shocks of the past, claiming that concern over mortgage stress has been “overstated”.

“Despite some seeing negative equity into mid-last year and a significant proportion of borrowers switching from interest-only to principal and interest loans over the last few years (which has seen interest-only loans drop from nearly 40 per cent of all loans to 18 per cent), there has been no surge in forced sales and non-performing loans,” he said.

“While Australia saw a deterioration in lending standards with the last boom, it was nothing like other countries saw prior to the GFC. Much of the increase in debt has gone to older, wealthier Australians, who are better able to service their loans.”

Residential home values could fall
Residential home values could fall
nestegg logo

Forward this article to a friend. Follow us on Linkedin. Join us on Facebook. Find us on Twitter for the latest updates
Rate the article

About the author

author image

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

About the author

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

more on this topic

more on this topic

From the web

Recommended by Spike Native Network

More articles

Website Notifications

Get notifications in real-time for staying up to date with content that matters to you.