Despite three consecutive rate rises, most Australians remain optimistic about the future of the property market.
According to the MFAA/Bankwest Home Finance Index survey, 73 per cent of respondents expect house prices to rise – the highest proportion in more than three years.
The Index canvasses the opinion of 850 people on a range of issues relating to the economy and housing market.
“Confidence in the housing market is not only pre-GFC – it’s back where it was during the height of the housing boom,” MFAA chief executive officer Phil Naylor said.
More than 49 per cent of respondents believe now is a good time to buy a home.
“Respondents from Queensland (41.4 per cent) were the least likely to think now was a good time to buy, but South Australians were more optimistic with 63.6 per cent saying it was a good time to buy,” Mr Naylor said.
But despite optimism from Australians, there is concern that some homebuyers could be priced out of the market as supply struggles to meet demand.
Urban Taskforce chief executive Aaron Gadiel said Sydney’s level of home ownership is lower than every other capital city, bar Darwin.
“We’re now seeing the harsh social impact of a lack of new home development,” he said.
“We need the federal government to invest in Sydney’s urban infrastructure, to help ease the way to more housing development.
"Otherwise the social costs – higher rents and more tenuous living arrangements for families – will be too high to bear."