Mortgage pain hurts more in Sydney than it does in London and New York

Story by

  • Sydney families spend most on mortgage
  • Average repayment is $4123 a month
  • Dream of homeownership is more distant 

Sydneysiders spend more on their mortgage than families in London and even New York.

A survey of global cities put Sydney at the top when it came to the percentage of income spent on mortgages.

The median Sydney house price is $626,444, with mortgage repayments of $4123 a month - three quarters the average monthly income.

In Los Angeles and Toronto, just a third of the monthly income goes on mortgages, while in Dublin and New York it is less than half and in London or Auckland less than two thirds, the comparative survey revealed.

The high price of housing here has more than 80 per cent of potential buyers now believing the dream of home ownership is becoming more distant, a survey revealed, with 60 per cent blaming house prices rising faster than salaries.

The survey of more than 8000 people looking to buy in NSW found saving a deposit forced families into poverty.

Another survey, by Australian Property Monitors, found 46 per cent of homebuyers were worse off financially since buying.

However, just 6 per cent regretted the home purchase because it offered security, Australia Property Monitors head of research Yvonne Chan said.

First-home buyers were again being priced out, with finance for them at long-term lows, she said.

"We don't have the supply they do in the US, our lending criteria is more strict and the interest rate rises have priced out buyers," she said.

Property expert Margaret Lomas said buyers should rent in their preferred location and buy an investment property in an up-and-coming suburb.

"The great Aussie dream isn't lost. There are still opportunities for people to buy property and build substantial property portfolios by becoming a landlord rather than an owner-occupier," she said.

"Anyone wanting to get on to the property ladder in NSW should consider areas with strong infrastructure planning, population growth and a healthy demand from tenants to ensure great yields.

"My favourite hotspots are Nowra, Wollongong, Wagga, Granville, Bathurst, Orange and Queanbeyan."

Gavin Hirst, who rents in Lindfield, is looking for a home to buy in the northern suburbs of Sydney.

Already a landlord, Mr Hirst owns an investment property in Alexandria but said he wanted a family home with a backyard for his children to play in and which was close to good schools.

"It depends what you want to enter the property market for - capital gains or a cash flow," he said.