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House values up 2%, but listings down in big cities…

By Julie Halligan

Our national obsession with housing means that there doesn’t seem to be a dull moment these days in the property market. Here are three significant news snippets from this week:

Data out from the Reserve Bank has backed up CoreLogic’s Buyer Classification data by confirming that investor lending remained subdued in June with the value of mortgage lending lower than a year ago. Not entirely unexpected – yields are still relatively low and the introduction of ring fencing of rental losses means that investors can no longer offset losses against other forms of income outside a rental portfolio.

Also this month the Residential Tenancies (Healthy Homes Standards) Regulations 2019 came into effect increasing the requirements for insulation, heating, ventilation and record keeping for landlords. This increased compliance will cause landlords to incur costs, which landlords often suggest will be passed directly on to tenants, although market rent, supply and demand will also determine whether this happens. The regulations also introduce the potential for up to $4,000 of exemplary damages payable to the tenant for failure to comply, so it will be interesting to see whether there is a flurry of complaints to the Tenancy Tribunal.

This is possibly good news for First Home Buyers trying to get into the property market with CoreLogic reporting their share of dwelling purchases being at its highest level for 15 years.

And finally, some new changes to the EQC Act came in to effect, largely unnoticed or reported. The two key changes are the level of cover from EQC, with the residential “cap” rising from $100K to $ 150K. The second, is that the Contents cap falls from $30K to $0. Yes, zero. Any contents loss in the event of a natural disaster will have to be claimed on your private insurance policy – so expect to see those premiums rise when you come to renew!

Source; Core Logic

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