Housing credit expansion moderates from hot to warm

Mortgage lending growth slowed dramatically in the last financial year, new statistics have revealed.

Housing finance for owner occupiers reached $195.9 billion in 2014-15 after growing 7.8 per cent over the year, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

That was a significant drop on the 14.6 per cent growth recorded in 2013-14, although higher than the 4.7 per cent figure in 2012-13 and 6.1 per cent figure in 2011-12.

Nick Proud, executive director of residential at the Property Council of Australia, said although the owner-occupier market remains strong, the investor lending crackdown will start to impact on the number of homes that will proceed through to development.

“What brings developments to market is a good mix of investors and owner occupiers who can ensure that pre-sale commitments are met and projects go from planning to construction,” he said.

Master Builders Australia chief economist Peter Jones said the association would closely monitor the results of the investor crackdown.

“The resulting remix by the banks from investor to owner-occupied demand will become more apparent over the next few months,” he said.

“The authorities need to be careful as they attempt to avoid risks attached to rapid house price inflation, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne.”

[Related: RBA warns of more boom and more debt]

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