First homebuyers swell real estate activity

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First home buyers are accounting for 30% of all sales in the WA market, while first timers in Victoria were expected to begin benefitting from stamp duty cuts on the weekend.

Data from the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia shows that first home buyers are now the source of 30% of all sales in the state, on the back of more affordable and stable property prices.

REIWA president David Airey said reasonably stable prices and low interest rates over nine months have resulted in overall turnover picking up by almost 20% compared with the same time last year.

REIWA expected the median house price to return to parity with a June quarter reading of $484,000, while stable conditions saw a reduction in discounting, to just under 6% of properties.

“Investors still seem hesitant to return, but there are signs of this starting to turn around as rental yields improve on the back of rising rents, low interest rates and stable prices," he said.

The Real Estate Institute of Victoria said first home buyers in the state began benefitting from stamp duty concessions on the weekend, if their settlement is due to fall after January 1.

With the next round of stamp duty cuts due to come into effect next year, REIV chief executive Enzo Raimondo said buyers should be aware concessions were attached to settlements, not the purchase contract.

“This means if you are buying your first home right now, you meet the eligibility criteria and your settlement date is 1 January or later, you will be eligible for the 30% discount," he said.

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