John Sage

Top End Stages Comeback

How often do we cheer for Goliath? It’s not generally the done thing, is it? However, in the Australian property market, the fact that well-to-do investors are back in the property market is a very welcome sign.

This is due to APRA’s decision to permit banks to reduce their affordability buffers in assessing borrowers. What this means is that people can now borrow up to 20% more, depending on their finances.

It’s a much-needed boost for borrowers who have not had much to cheer about over the recent years of strict lending policies we’ve had.

So, for example, a couple who are first-time property investors can now afford to buy a bigger property, providing more options for young people getting into the property market.

At the other end of the scale, experienced, wealthy investors are also able to borrow more, spending up in Australia’s most prosperous suburbs. These affluent suburbs are looking at receiving a lift from increased sales, as they will benefit from increased competition and low stock.

Some of the well-heeled suburbs set to boom are:

Suburb Median home value Combined income needed to buy post APRA move 3-year growth forecast
Sandy Bay, TAS 889,382 110,000 +13%
Toorak, VIC 3,661,209 404,000 +17.1%
Mosman, NSW 3,375,829 374,000 +13%
New Farm, QLD 1,200,116 144,000 +14.6%
Unley Park, SA 1,462,541 172,000 +13.2%

Source: CoreLogic,, Empower Wealth

Keep in mind that this follows some serious downturns. For example, Peppermint Grove in Perth dropped 18.7% in the last year, Brisbane’s New Farm dropped 23%, and Mosman in Sydney sank 10.1%.

A recovery was needed. What we see happening now is APRA’s move having had the shock that they intended, and now the dust is settling.

It’s a good wake-up-call for all investors and potential investors to keep an eye on the market, staying vigilant to opportunities and to take action if the opportunities are there, or if they’re starting to reappear.

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