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Is Australian home affordability on par with the world?

Is Australian home affordability on par with the world?

May 5, 2011

Home ownership rates have forged ahead in many developed countries, but Australia is not one of them.

A new report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) found that 69.5 percent of Australians own their own home, down from 71.4 percent in the 1990s.

Out of 18 developed counties, the results place Australia on par with Greece (down by 10 percent to 73.2 percent), Mexico (down to 70.7 percent from 77.2 percent), France (down to 55.3 percent from 54.8 percent) and Luxembourg (down to 69.3 percent from 71.6 percent). All five countries emerged as having growing populations and increasing numbers of people who can’t afford their own home.

House ownership is however on the increase in other nations.

The OECD report attributed the decline in home ownership in Australia to:

  • An increase in number of single person households
  • A shortfall of 200,000 homes with no measures in place to generate increased supply
  • Rising cost of housing.

A recent survey by PRDnationwide reported that 63 percent of surveyed Australians feel the Government is not doing enough to address the issue of housing affordability. The survey revealed most people felt the rising price of property and home loan interest rates were their main impediment to home ownership.

Global snapshot
Countries with increased home ownership rates between the mid-1990s and 2010:

Country

1990 (%)

2010 (%)
Spain
83.2
77.8
Ireland
81.4
79.6
Belgium
71.7
67.7
United Kingdom
70.7
67.5
Canada
68.9
61.3
United States
68.7
66.2
Italy
67.9
64.2
Netherlands
55.4
47.5

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