Home lending commitments have soared in September thanks to a late surge in first home buyer activity.
According to figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), loans for the construction of new homes and the purchase of new homes grew 5.5 per cent in September.
Similarly, the total number of seasonally adjusted loans for owner occupiers (net of refinancing) grew by 6.2 per cent in the month of September 2009 and was up by 44.2 per cent compared to September 2008.
The Housing Industry Association (HIA) senior economist Ben Phillips said first home buyers hoping to capitalise on the government’s first home owners boost were responsible for the surge in lending.
“The September quarter construction lending increased by 66.9 per cent compared with levels 12 months ago thanks to the first home owners boost, record low interest rates and a resilient Australian economy, clearly signalling the potential for a strong recovery in new home building,” Mr Phillips said.
“The concern is that this good result will be blunted as post-September we are seeing higher interest rates and the first home buyer boost winding back.”
In seasonally adjusted terms the total number of owner occupier loans in September 2009 grew 7 per cent in NSW, 1.2 per cent in Queensland, 14.4 per cent in WA, 3.8 per cent in Tasmania, 1.1 per cent in SA and 3.1 per cent in Victoria.