Sydney was named the most unaffordable market to enter in Australia and was observed to be more expensive than New York, London, and Singapore, according to a report by Yahoo Finance.
The Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey for 2018 showed that all five of Australia’s major housing markets are still “severely unaffordable” despite last year’s decline.
Melbourne held the second spot in the list of these home markets, following New South Wales’ capital.
Median income households were reported to need to at least three years’ more income to afford a median-priced home than they would have in 2004. This condition notably occurred despite the significant property downturn in 2018.
The researchers associated the results with Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) warning last year that the country’s property market is at risk of a “hard landing”.
“Prices have more than doubled in real terms since the early 2000s and household debt has surged. The market has started to cool over the last year, with prices falling most notably in Melbourne and Sydney. So far, data point to a soft landing without substantial consequence for the overall economy. Nevertheless, [the] risk of a hard landing remains,” OECD said.
Demographia researchers Alain Bertaud from the NYU Marron Institute of Urban Management and urban policy analysts Wendell Cox and Hugh Pavletich observed Australia’s complicated housing landscape down in terms of urban containment policies.
These policies, more commonly known as urban consolidation in Australia, mean housing development is limited to certain areas. It is designed to push planners to densify rather than spread.
“Australia’s generally unfavourable housing affordability is in significant contrast to the broad affordability that existed before implementation of urban containment. The price-to-income ratio in Australia was below 3.0 in the late 1980s. All of Australia’s major markets have urban containment policy and all have severely unaffordable housing,” the researchers said.
The study conducted by Demographia covers 309 metropolitan housing markets across Australia, Canada, China (Hong Kong only), Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States.