Perth economic property indicators

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CommSec (PDF) provides commentary on economic performance by state and territory. Further detail is in the NAB State Economic Overview (PDF).

In September 2020, Terry Ryder of HotSpotting and demographer Bernard Salt (link) projected that Perth is due for a property boom throughout the first half of the 2020s.

In September 2020, Knight Frank (link) projected that: “In Brisbane quicker recovery from the pandemic than expected, combined with a tight apartment supply pipeline, has seen the Brisbane market emerge in a very strong position for 2021 and beyond. Coming off an extended period of low price growth Brisbane’s affordability is the best capital city side by side with Perth in the short to medium term.”

Perth house price growth over the past year (dates and methodologies differ between research houses) are shown below:

Price growth charts over a longer time period are shown by CoreLogic Housing Overview Chartpack (PDF)

In the longer term, Perth is projected by Oxford Economics Global City Projections to 2030 (PDF) to be the only Australian city to rank in the world Top 50 for GDP increase over the period to 2030. This is particularly impressive as the measure is the increase in $GDP (not the % increase in GDP) and Perth is a relatively small city compared to others on the list. While the report recognises that the volatility associated with resource intensive cities needs to be managed, the overall long term trend for Perth based on demand for iron ore and gas is assessed as strongly positive. Some positive aspects of Perth were recently outlined in a November 2015 speech by the RBA Governor (PDF). In March 2016, Macro Plan Dimasi (PDF), a property sector research and advisory group, stated when reviewing Perth that “canny investors know that now is the time to buy”Urbis Report on Perth 2015 (PDF) notes that Perth consistently ranks as one of the world’s top ten most liveable cities and is home to more ASX-listed company headquarters than Melbourne or Sydney.

FDI Intelligence – a unit of The Financial Times, which is considered by Global Capital Markets Survey (link) to be the world’s most important business read, and by the Worldwide Professional Investment Community audience (link) as the most credible publication in reporting financial and economic issues – issues a report on the top Global Cities of the Future: the Top 25 overall; and the Top 10 by various criteria. The most recent fDI Global Cities of the Future report (PDF) has Perth ranked 10th for Strategy.

CoreLogic in June 2020 indicated that Perth has the recipe to outperform (link): “Prior to COVID-19, most indicators for Western Australia were moving into an upswing. Unemployment had fallen from 6.9% to 5.2%, jobs growth was trending higher, population growth had bounced back to the highest level since 2014, housing supply was contained, and state final demand crept above the decade average … In early 2020, the Perth dwelling market had four consecutive months of dwelling value increases, which is the longest stretch of capital growth since 2014 … The past few weeks have seen an increasingly optimistic outlook for the mining sector because of a recovery in the Chinese economy … China is actually working to reduce barriers to iron ore imports, which is a major source of revenue for WA mining. The reason for rising iron ore demand is that Chinese steel producers expect a rise in government stimulus and infrastructure to spur production (which uses iron ore as an input). This has contributed to a relatively strong rise in the value of iron ore and plans from some of Australia’s largest miners to boost production … Another key factor that should support housing demand across Perth is the sheer affordability of housing. At the end of April 2020, the median value of a house was recorded at just over $465,000 which was the lowest of any capital city. The blend of affordable housing options and the expectation for more resilient economic conditions is a good recipe for Perth’s housing market to outperform”. 

Supply & Demand

Population experts .id Consulting Pty Ltd released a 25 page report on WA population projections (PDF) in March 2017. The report states that WA’s natural resources provide future potential for employment opportunities that will attract people to the state, both from overseas and interstate. Perth’s projected annual population growth for 2018-2027 is 1.9% pa (vs 1.6% for WA and 1.2% for Australia) and 1.6% from 2028-2037 (vs 1.3% for WA and 1.0% for Australia). This means that over the next 20 years the population increase is expected to exceed 860k for Perth and 1m for WA.

Forecasts from respected economic forecaster BIS Oxford Economics (PDF) for the three years to 2021 are that:

  • Net Overseas Migration is expected to move from about +27k pa (10 year average) to +22k pa
  • Net Interstate Migration is expected to move from about -1.2k pa (10 year average) to -1.7k pa
  • Therefore, total Net Migration is expected to move from about +26k pa to +20k pa
  • Taking into account natural population growth, Underlying Demand for dwellings is expected to be about +22k pa
  • Dwelling Commencements for 2017/18 are running at about +19k pa
  • Dwelling Stock Deficiency/Surplus (as a % annual underlying demand) is expected to move from a surplus of around 100% to a surplus of around 40%

SQM Property Listings (PDF)

For property price projections:

National & International economic indicators related to property

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