New home buyers at record lows

Real Estate

The latest lending data has shown home loans rose less than expected in July with the proportion of new home buyers at record lows. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reports the number of loans granted rose 0.3 per cent in July while total housing finance by value rose 2.7 per cent to $28.6 billion. 
Commsec says while the rise in overall housing finance is positive, the key is the new home building market and first home buyers are still reticent to wade in. Commsec notes some first home buyers are being squeezed out by investors given tight housing supply but also that the preference for young people is to rent rather than buy. First-time buyers in the home loan sector dropped to a record low of 12.2 per cent in July, well under the long-term average of 20 per cent. 
Listed property stock opportunities
FNN spoke to Ausbil's Australian Active Equity Fund’s Director of Equities, John Grace about where he is seeing opportunities in the listed property space: “It’s all about residential development. So, we’re seeing companies like Lend Lease Group (ASX:LLC) and Stockland Limited (ASX:SGP) which have strong land banks, seeing high demand for their community developments, where the pipeline is very robust. And, interesting also, companies like Goodman Group (ASX:GMG), which are converting industrial and commercial land into residential opportunities, that’s the key.” 
Australian auction results
Sydney recorded an 83 per cent clearance rate from 522 properties for auction
Melbourne posted a 79 per cent clearance rate from 715 properties for auction
Brisbane booked a 43 per cent clearance rate from 84 properties for auction
Adelaide saw a 59 per cent clearance rate from 47 properties for auction
Property news
Fairfax Media Limited’s (ASX:FXJ) online residential listings business Domain is set to expand with its proposed $50 million purchase of Canberra based online property portal All Homes now the deal has been given the green light by Australia’s competition regulator. 
Property investor Charter Hall Group (ASX:CHC) will partner with super fund HOSTPLUS to acquire a $603 million portfolio of 54 hospitality assets across Australia from Woolworths Limited (ASX:WOW) subsidiary ALH Group.  

National property developer Sunland Group (ASX:SDG) has acquired a three hectare site on Sydney’s Northern Beaches for $18 million which has been earmarked for a residential community valued at $80 million. 

Listed property trust Mirvac Industrial Trust (ASX:MIX) has sold a property for just over $US9 million located southwest of the Chicago Central Business District in America.

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