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October sees housing finance commitments grow across Australia

On Dec 11 2013
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If you're interested in buying a home in the near future, now could be the perfect opportunity ...

If you're interested in buying a home in the near future, now could be the perfect opportunity to do so as the number of housing finance commitments across the country increased during October.

The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) release outlined the growth of lending across the nation, with a 1 per cent increase in the number of owner-occupier finance commitments secured during October.

Likewise, there was a 2.7 per cent rise in the number of housing finance commitments from investors, which could indicate the growing demand within Australia for property in the face of an expected population growth.

Tasmania was the state with the largest increase, rising by 2.7 per cent over the month. Following this, both New South Wales and Victoria underwent noteworthy development.

Overall, six of the eight territories experienced growth in commitments.

Peter Jones, chief economist for Master Builders Australia, said the latest ABS results proved the nation was gaining more traction and beginning to see the housing and construction markets develop and grow.

"The 1 per cent increase in October for housing finance commitments for owner occupied housing confirms that the significant rise in the September 2013 figures was not an aberration," said Mr Jones in a December 10 statement.

He also highlighted the lift in value of dwelling commitments for investment housing, which rose 8.2 per cent (seasonally adjusted) and was close to 30 per cent higher over the year.

"Owner occupied finance approvals for construction and purchase of new dwellings combined rose 1.9 per cent in October to be 12.4 per cent higher than the corresponding month last year," said Mr Jones.

However,  Mr Jones was amongst one of the many industry bodies to express concern about the growth of first home buyers in over the month.

President of the Real Estate Institute of Australia, Peter Bushby, said the government needed to provide more support for first home buyers in order to stimulate this particular area of the population.

"The proportion of first home buyers in the number of owner-occupied housing finance commitments increased slightly to 12.6 per cent compared to the September figure of 12.5 per cent," said Mr Bushby in a December 10 statement.

"The proportion is one of the lowest since data began to be collected in July 1991 and is far lower than the long-run average proportion of 19.9 per cent, despite eight interest rate cuts since November 2011."

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