Lending to Aussie households spiked 3.9% in July, the strongest growth seen since October 2014, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
The bumper month follows a 1.9% rise in June 2019, suggesting the tide has finally started to turn in the lending market.
“Whoa. Quite the surge in housing credit in July,” remarked CoreLogic’s head of research Tim Lawless, “haven’t seen numbers like this since 2015/16”.
Lending for investors rose 4.7% in July with rises across all states and territories, while lending to owner-occupiers also recorded substantial gains at 5.3%.
Meanwhile, home loans to first home buyers rose 1.3% in July. This is the fourth consecutive month of growth for this segment.
The rise came the same month that the prudential regulator, APRA, eased loan serviceability standards.
Essentially, APRA stopped telling lenders to assess whether borrowers could afford their repayment obligations based on a minimum interest rate of 7%.
BIS Oxford Economics’ Maree Kilroy adds that investor sentiment also received a boost following the Coalition government’s federal election victory, and pointed to back-to-back rate cuts in June and July.
“After withdrawing from the market for several years, investors have reacted positively,” Kilroy says.
Lawless agrees that the surge is due to “two rate cuts, easier credit, sentiment boost post-election and removal of macro-prudential”.
And his colleague, Cameron Kusher, suggests this might only be the beginning.
“Importantly this is only to July. We could see these figures go much higher by the time we are right in the middle of spring,” Kusher says.
As Kusher suggests, this might just be the beginning of a lending surge.
Spring usually brings plenty of new properties onto the market – everything looks nicer in spring!
So if one of them happens to catch your eye, get in touch and we’ll be happy to guide you through the process of obtaining finance.
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