FHBs at heightened risk, despite great repayment track record

When the developer Dyldam launched its South Quarter project at Parramatta – on the former Auto Alley – last  month they noted there was especially strong interest from first time buyers amid high local interest.

The average off the plan sale price was $750,000 in what will become a $876 million residential mixed-use project on the former Holden car yard.

It is a sign that after a lengthy absence, first time buyers are emerging across NSW, perhaps lured by the expansion in the available government grants. 

The latest ABS data calculated 2,426 first home buyer commitments in August which represented the biggest monthly number for five years.

Though still below the longterm average, NSW first home buyers accounted for 12.9% of owner occupier commitments over the month, the highest proportion since 2012.

It was up from a recent NSW low of 7.5% in February 2017 when it looked easy to conclude that our higher housing prices had significantly reduced the probability of many ever becoming an FHB.

There’s been research recently done by the Reserve Bank of Australia which confirmed that ‘generation rent’ is a reflection of higher housing prices rather than any shift in preferences.

It seems young households still have a desire to become home owners, however, fewer potential FHBs are actually able to enter the housing market.