The Perth property market is at its most affordable in more than two decades, as falling prices and wage growth make entry into the housing market easier for Perth families. Housing Industry Association figures show that Perth remains the most affordable market of any of Australia’s capital cities for average families. The HIA’s quarterly housing affordability report shows that an average wage earner would have to pay 26.5 per cent of their monthly pay to meet the repayments on a median-priced dwelling.
Its index of housing affordability shows Perth has improved 5.7 per cent over the past year. An average Sydney worker would have to pay more than half of their monthly income to the bank to get into a housing market which is, despite recent falls, still the most expensive in the country. Melbourne mortgages would consume 44.2 per cent of an average wage. “Affordability continues to rise to very favourable levels in Perth and Darwin — a silver lining to the dark clouds over their respective economies as they continue to adjust to post-mining boom conditions,” the report said.
HIA analysts said Perth prospects were even better for first-homebuyers looking for units or cheaper freestanding houses. “Unlike Melbourne where lower-priced properties have been resilient in the face of the broader market downturn, in Perth the most significant declines are evident at the low end of the market,” the report said.
“This is good news from the perspective of homebuyers entering the market for the first time.” Compared with the peak of the pre-global financial crisis property boom, houses in Perth are more than twice as affordable. Buyers looking outside the metropolitan area would be even better off, despite lower average wages in regional areas, with the post-boom housing crash meaning repayments on a median-priced house of about $1436 a month to a new homebuyer — or about 21 per cent of average earnings. Those figures make regional WA the most affordable housing market in the country, according to the HIA.