Newspaper article Coffs Coast Advocate (Coffs Harbour, Australia)

It's a Long Wait for First Home

Newspaper article Coffs Coast Advocate (Coffs Harbour, Australia)

It's a Long Wait for First Home

Article excerpt

AS THE clocked ticked over to begin 2017, many young locals will have made a resolution to buy their first home this year. But many may not have considered that their goal may take a little longer than expected.

According to a new national report from Bankwest, it will take just under five years (4.69 years) for Coffs Harbour first time home buyers to save a 20% deposit to buy a house, which equates to an average of $87,600. It's a slightly shorter wait if you're shopping for a unit; a 20% deposit is $58,700, which would take 3.17 years to save.

The statistics are similar for Bellingen Shire where buyers take 4.98 years to save for a house deposit of or $86,300 and $52,600 and 3.07 years for a unit.

Lower property prices in the Nambucca Shire bring the waiting time a little lower; 3.86 years and $65,600 for a house deposit or $49,000 and 2.9 years for a unit.

The 2016 Bankwest Financial Indicator Series' First Time Buyer Deposit Report reveals there were half as many first time home buyers as a proportion of total buyers in the market nationally in 2016 compared with 2009. The proportion of first time buyers in Australia has declined steadily over the last five years to 13.4% in 2016 (with the remainder repeat purchasers or investors) compared to 28.8% in 2009.

The report blames the failure of wage growth to keep pace with rising house prices.

Coffs Harbour and Bellingen's average saving times were higher than the national average which stands at 4.4 years, which was two months longer than 2015 (4.2 years). However, the national average deposit was significantly higher than the local average at $103,600, in 2015 the figure stood at $99,700.

"Low interest rates, sluggish wage growth, and rising house prices are making it increasingly difficult for first time buyers to get a foot on the property ladder," Bankwest Executive General Manager, Retail, Andrew Whitechurch said. …

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