Raine & Horne Market Update: WA Real Estate Review, June 2018

JUNE 13, 2018

The latest REIWA Curtin Buy-Rent Index for the March 2018 quarter has revealed it’s the best time to buy in Perth since 2013. The Index, released quarterly, assessed whether it’s better to buy or rent in Perth based on past and current trends in the economic and property market climate.

REIWA President Hayden Groves said the March 2018 quarter index showed the annual rate of house price growth required over ten years to break even in the Buy-Rent Index had declined from 3.3% to 3.1% over the quarter, suggesting an improvement for prospective homebuyers weighing up a purchasing decision.

Alec Marra, Principal of Raine & Horne Bunbury, said buying a house in the southern WA coastal city of Bunbury was now more affordable than renting. He added, “We are getting more enquiries from first home buyers. However, their hands are tied because many first-timers don’t have a sufficient deposit and the banks are making it harder for them to get finance.”

This situation is different for first home buyers securing ‘house and land packages’ or new homes. In Western Australia, first home owners buying or building a new home may apply for a grant of up to $10,000. “However, there is no grant for those buying established homes,” Alec said. “Many first home buyers prefer established homes.”

With the banks putting the brakes on lending, Alec declared it’s time for the WA government to reconsider a subsidy for established homes to enable first timers to take advantage of better prices and lower interest rates. “It’s a travesty that it’s cheaper to buy in Bunbury but younger Western Australians can’t jump off the rental treadmill.”

Longer-term, the commitment of $560 million to stages 2 and 3 of the Bunbury Outer Ring Road in the May Federal Budget will prove useful for business, and property values in Bunbury, said Alec. “The ring road will be good for local business, jobs and real estate prices as it will facilitate the development of the Bunbury Port and industries in the state’s south-west, as well as improving travel times and freight efficiency.” Tellingly the ring road aims to separate regional from local traffic, reducing inter-regional transportation and heavy long-haul freight passing through Bunbury.