Australia has the third most expensive housing market in the world

By Michael Mata | 27 Jan 2017
Faced with ludicrous headlines about tin sheds selling for millions of dollars in Sydney and a growing national housing affordability crisis, many Aussies wouldn’t be surprised to learn that housing in Australia’s major cities is among the least affordable in the world.

International housing affordability think tank Demographia recently released its 13th survey on house prices around the world, analysing prices from the third quarter of 2016. The survey found that Sydney has the second most unaffordable major city housing in the world. Melbourne trailed closely behind, coming in at number six on the list.

Australia was found to have the third most expensive housing market in the world. Hong Kong took first spot and New Zealand took the second spot.

The survey compares average home prices to median income, taking in 94 major cities and 406 areas in total. Houses that are three times the median income, or less, are considered “unaffordable”, whereas houses that cost more than five times the median income are considered “severely unaffordable”.

Sydney’s housing is 12.2 times the median income and Melbourne’s is 9.5 times the median income.

Adelaide, Brisbane, and Perth were also ranked “severely unaffordable,” coming in at 6.6, 6.2, and 6.1 times the median income respectively.

“Among the 94 severely unaffordable markets, 33 are in Australia,” the report said.

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