What’s next for the Western Australia housing market?

One analyst sees a sunnier outlook this year

What’s next for the Western Australia housing market?



Despite lean housing market conditions over the past few years, owners and investors in Western Australia have good reasons for high expectations in 2018 amid robust job growth

At the end of 2017, the state had in place most of the market fundamentals for a revival, according to Lino Iacomella, WA Executive Director for the Property Council of Australia.

Among other things, property values are some of the most affordable in the country and an oversupply of housing has mostly “soaked up.” Iacomella said interest rates remain at historic lows, and demand has returned for new office space.

“[M]ost importantly the development industry has a clear growth plan for Perth in the state Government’s METRONET public transport blueprint for the metropolitan area.”

Among other things, the METRONET initiative seeks to ensure that consideration of land-use outcomes is embedded in the design of new infrastructure in the city.

Iacomella pointed out that weak population growth may prove to be a downside risk to the market. “The most recent annual increase in WA’s population was just 20,000 people, well down on the boom peak of 85,000 additional people each year and the historic annual growth rate for WA of 45,000.”

Nevertheless, he added that the state’s history shows it e will track back to the average population growth levels as the economy expands, and job growth is sustained.

“In 2018 the property industry is expecting real progress on key policy reforms that will support WA’s growth, including modernising the state’s aging strata laws, adopting uniform local planning regulations and the introduction of a plan to guide WA’s infrastructure needs to enable the construction of new precincts and places that WA needs to support future growth.”

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