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24 May 2010

News: Housing Supply Dwindles in Queensland

At Morpheus Property, we like to take a balanced view on the news articles we read. This article from the Sunday Mail (23rd May 2010) talks about the property shortage in Queensland.

It seems affordability is about to squeeze the dream from many people's grasp and leave home ownership to a smaller percentage of Australia's population.

QUEENSLAND needs to build more than 900,000 new houses and units in the next 21 years to meet projected population growth.

But new figures show reality will fail to meet expectations with under-supply expected to grow into tens of thousands on current approval numbers.

Experts say the shortage will force up the price of housing, including rents, and possibly leave a generation of adults unable to afford a new home.

In 2009, there was a shortfall of more than 10,000 houses on the 47,000 needed to match population growth.

Figures from Queensland Treasury and the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed the under-supply was spread across the state. Brisbane built nearly 2000 fewer dwellings than needed last year, while in the north, Townsville and Cairns were down 1000 and 800 respectively. Toowoomba's housing shortfall was more than 450.

With demand exceeding supply, first-home buyers, already jittery following interest rate rises, have even less chance of entering the market.

Real Estate Institute of Queensland managing director Dan Molloy said recent research showed first-home buyers were down 60 per cent on March 2009.

"These figures really show how much of a struggle it is for prospective homeowners to get into the market in Queensland," Mr Molloy said.

Master Builders housing policy director Paul Bidwell said the biggest issue was developers' inability to access finance from banks.

Red tape from local councils, massive infrastructure charges and lack of available land were also serious issues.

"It's biting at a number of levels," he said. "Developers can't get access to funds and it's harder for buyers to get home loans approved."

Queensland Council of Social Service director Jill Lang said those on lower incomes were increasingly bidding for rental properties alongside households which have traditionally been able to buy into the property market.

Queensland's population is expected to increase from 4.5 million to as much as 7 million by 2031.

Once again, Morpheus Property would love to hear opinions from property investors and home buyers. How does news like this influence your decision to buy, your budget or the timing of your purchase?

Feel free to share your comments, or contact Morpheus to discuss - 1300 911 576.

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