QLD Housing Affordability at 72.6%

By Amanda Shannon

Queensland's housing affordability has seen a 13 per cent improvement between the December quarter of 2011 and the same period in 2012 – a trend that may interest those considering purchasing Gold Coast real estate.

The HIA (Housing Industry Association) – Commonwealth Bank (CBA) Housing Affordability Index recorded a national increase of 5.5 per cent for the three months to December last year, and an 18.4 per cent year on year increase.

HIA senior economist Shane Garrett explained that weakness in price developments, earnings growth and interest rate cuts by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is all leading to increasing levels of housing affordability.

He said: "This is the eighth consecutive quarter of increases in the index, bringing it close to levels not seen since the depths of the GFC during 2009.

"For regional areas, affordability is at levels last seen during the early 2000s decade. Affordability is on the increase in every part of the country.

Mr Garrett added that affordability would be further improved if financial institutions fully passed on the cash rate cuts made by the RBA.

Governments need to address their heavy taxation on property purchases, Mr Garrett concluded, in addition to further cuts from the central bank.

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