Brokers should take notice of migration stats: RP Data

Nearly half of Australia's migrants come from just two regions - and it's time brokers started paying attention



Australia’s population growth rate over the 2012 calendar year was recorded at 1.75% - the most rapid rate of population growth in three years – and brokers should take notice, according to RP Data’s latest Property Pulse report.

More than 394,000 new residents were added to Australia in the last 12 months, 60% of whom are the result of net overseas migration and RP Data’s Tim Lawless says that, with overseas migration being such an important driver of housing demand, it’s worth providing an update on where most of these settlers are coming from.

“The vast majority of overseas migrants are (still) coming from the Oceania region (mostly New Zealand). Just over 34,400 long term and permanent migrants originated from the Oceania and Antarctica region over the year to April 2013, equating to about 23% of all migrants to Australia over the past year,” says Lawless.

New Zealanders alone accounted for 28,750 new migrants.

Migrants from southern and central Asia comprise the next major group. Southern Asia includes India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, while central Asia includes countries like Afghanistan, Armenia and Kazakhstan. In the past 12 months, 28,580 migrants moved to Australia from this region.

“Over the past decade, there have been some substantial shifts in the number of migration movements,” says Lawless.

“Flows from Oceania have risen from comprising 17.5% of all movements a decade ago to now comprise just fewer than 23%. Southern and central Asian migration movements equated to 10.2% of all migration activity a decade ago and are now almost 19%. There has also been a substantial proportional lift in north east Asian migrants (11.5% in 2003 to 15.2% in 2013).”

“There has been quite a bit of attention lately suggesting that housing demand from Asian nations, particularly China, has been rising in Australia and based on the migration figures that is likely to be true (at least from a population growth perspective),” says Lawless.

“For a variety of reasons there is much less attention placed on housing demand flowing from our easterly neighbours in New Zealand, which accounts for a much larger flow of migration movements.

Lawless stresses that brokers need to be aware of their target markets.

“With overseas migrants seeking out Australian housing, be it to buy or rent, think about the regions that are most appropriate and ensure you are communicating appropriately.”

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