Refinancing remained high through April, while new loans continue to seesaw, according to data released this week by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
The figures show that the value of new housing loans fell 2.9% to $23.3 billion in April 2023 (seasonally adjusted), after a 5.3% rise the previous month.
The value of new owner-occupier lending fell 3.8% to $15.4 billion in April, while the value of new investor loans fell 0.9% to $7.9 billion.
Excluding land and alterations, additions and repairs, the value of new owner-occupier home loans fell 3.9% to $14.3 billion. At the same time, the number of these commitments fell only 0.1%.
Compared to pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels in February 2020, the value of new owner-occupier loans was 10.2% higher in April 2023, while the number was 5.3% lower. The average value of these loans has risen by 21.8% over this period.
The number of new owner-occupier first home buyer loan commitments fell 0.9%, after a rise of 16.5% in March. This was 16.2% lower compared with a year ago.
Borrowers continued to switch lenders, with the value of refinancing down 8.6% but still high at $13 billion, after reaching a record high of $14.2 billion in March.