Confidence in property industry hits two year high

by Miklos Bolza13 Jan 2017
Confidence across the Australian property industry is the highest it has been in two years, according to new findings by ANZ and the Property Council of Australia.
The latest quarterly ANZ Property Council Survey polled over 1,500 industry professionals and revealed that confidence rose by two points to 132 for the March 2017 quarter. A score of 100 in the survey is considered neutral.
“This is good news to start 2017. This data says that the industry is optimistic about the coming quarter,” said Ken Morrison, chief executive of the Property Council of Australia.

Jane Fitzgerald, NSW executive director for the Property Council of Australia, told Australian Broker that the industry was confident about econimic growth, capital values and forward work schedules for the March quarter.

“This means more people employed in the property industry, services linked to the industry can benefit from this growth and the industry can continue to provide the homes and workplaces Australia needs,” she said.
NSW had the highest confidence in the country at 149. Morrison attributed this strong surge to economic growth, housing and forward work expectations as well as confidence in the state government, Morrison said.

Fitzgerald pointed to the NSW government's adoption of asset recycling as contributing to the state's leading property industry.

“NSW industry confidence must be strengthened in 2017 through further reforms to the State’s planning system that has held back growth for too long,” she said.

Outside of NSW, Morrison pointed to the clear trends across other states: “We are seeing consistent and strong growth expectations in Victoria and the ACT.  We are also seeing a pickup in confidence in South Australia and Queensland,” he said.
Western Australia was the only state to fall backwards in terms of confidence – a lapse due to the state still struggling to come to terms with the end of the mining boom, Morrison said.

Richard Yetsenga, chief economist for ANZ, explained that a lot of this boosted confidence was driven by the residential property market.
“Much of the improved outlook for the property market came from the residential segment, supported by improved expectations of capital price growth, forward work schedules and construction activity,” he said.
“Coupled with the returning presence of investors, it appears that demand for housing is reasonably steady at an elevated level.”
Sentiments in commercial property was stronger than in residential, he added, with net levels of confidence steadily rising for the past two years. This trend reflects a greater outlook for both price growth and construction activity.
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