Sunday, January 14, 2007

Harder they fall: Sydney's biggest housing slump

Sydney home prices have suffered their sharpest annual fall on record as the property market continues to slump - and experts are tipping the slide to continue for the next few years.

The price of an average established home in Sydney fell 5 per cent last financial year, the biggest drop since the Bureau of Statistics began keeping records two decades ago.

The results are a far cry from the 20 per cent growth rates during the peak of the property boom, with prices now falling faster than during the recession in the early 1990s.

For Sydney, it is a case of the bigger they come the harder they fall, economists say.

With home prices in the city still about seven times the average annual wage - well above historic ratios of five times typical pay - economists are predicting more falls over the next five years.

Kieran Davies, an analyst with ABN Amro, said: "Given prices are so out of line with wages, it wouldn't be a surprise to see prices remain flat to down for quite a long time - for some five years or longer."

Harder they fall: Sydney's biggest housing slump

Friday, January 12, 2007

Housing not affordable for many workers - Jan. 10, 2007

Americans struggle to afford housing

An annual income of about $85,000 is needed to afford median-priced homes; salaries have not seen modest gains, according to a study.