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Lending down, not out

Lending in all sectors of the housing market took a break over January this year, according to data released this week by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

The latest figures show that the total number of new owner-occupier home loans fell 2.6% in January 2024.

The number of first home buyers was down by 6.9%, while the value of lending to investors was down by 2.6% from the previous month.

Around the country, lending to owner-occupiers fell by 6.3% in New South Wales, 9.1% in Victoria, 2.9% in Queensland, 1.3% in South Australian, 8.4% in Tasmania, 16.3% in the Northern Territory, and 2% in the ACT. Western Australia was the only state where lending improved, to be up by 1.8%.

According to ABS head of finance statistics Mish Tan, the result is not as bad as it might look.

“Liaison with lenders suggests that recent improvements to loan processing times increased the number of loans processed in peak periods this year, relative to prior years”, she said.

“Although owner-occupier lending has fallen for two months in a row, the growth in trend terms was 1.5% over the year.”

The number of refinanced owner-occupier home loans between lenders fell 7.6%, to be 30.8% lower than a year ago.

“The volume of loans being refinanced was comparatively higher than new loans for the first half of 2023, but has since fallen sharply as lenders reduced competitive cashback offers”, Dr Tan noted.

The number of owner-occupier first home buyer loans fell 6.9% in January 2024, but was 4.4% higher compared to January 2023. The value of loans in this sector fell 6.0% over the month, but is still 13.2% higher compared with a year ago.

About Adam Nobel

CEO | Principal
M. Bus, Grad Dip Adv, B.Int Bus, LREA


0417 007 001

Adam is the founder and Principal of Hugo Alexander Property Group. With a previous career in advertising, 22 years experience in property investment, and 16 years in Brisbane real estate, he knows the market inside out to ensure his clients grow their wealth faster.

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