House prices in Australia and recovering share market boosting wealth levels


Australians are a lot richer than they think thanks to rising house prices and a recovering share market boosting wealth levels.

While many people paying off a mortgage won’t feel rich, the statistics say otherwise with average household wealth surging by 20.3 per cent during the past year.

As of June, per capita wealth stood at a record $522,032 based on the average riches of both couples living together and singles as measured by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Postcodes near schools have done particularly well, with house prices in some suburbs of Sydney climbing by $900,000 in just a year. 

Net household wealth is based on subtracting debt from what people own outright, from the equity in their home to shares, superannuation, cryptocurrency, bank savings and assets like cars and boats.

 

Australians are a lot richer than they think with rising house prices and a recovering share market boosting wealth levels. As of June, per capita wealth stood at $522,032 based on the average riches of both couples living together and singles as measured by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (pictured are walkers at Sydney’s Bondi Beach)

From the start of April until the end of June, as Sydney went into lockdown, average wealth levels increased by $27,782 or 5.6 per cent.

CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman said record-low interest rates and federal government stimulus measures, like HomeBuilder subsidies, had boosted wealth, despite weak wages growth.

‘So while wage growth remains tepid, the value of assets is surging,’ he said.

In the year to August, mid-point Australian property prices climbed by 18.4 per cent to $666,514, the fastest annual pace since July 1989, as Sydney’s median house value surged by 26 per cent to $1.293million.

The Australian share market’s benchmark S&P/ASX200 during the past year has climbed by 25 per cent, briefly touching record highs in mid-August.

By comparison, wages are growing at an annual pace of just 1.7 per cent and have been below the long-term average of 3 per cent since mid-2013.

Australian Bureau of Statistics head of finance and wealth Katherine Keenan said surging property prices were a major factor driving wealth levels.

‘Growth in household wealth continued to be driven by residential property prices,’ she said. 

Houses near schools are surging at levels well above the average, new Domain sales data for July 2021 showed. Median prices at Avalon Beach (pictured is a house on the market) in Sydney's Northern Beaches climbed by $870,000 to $2.803million, or a rise of 45 per cent, for homes near Barrenjoey High School

Houses near schools are surging at levels well above the average, new Domain sales data for July 2021 showed. Median prices at Avalon Beach (pictured is a house on the market) in Sydney’s Northern Beaches climbed by $870,000 to $2.803million, or a rise of 45 per cent, for homes near Barrenjoey High School

‘The strong property price growth reflected record low interest rates, rising consumer confidence and demand being greater than the levels of housing stock on the market.’

House prices near schools are surging at annual levels well above the norm, new Domain sales data for July 2021 showed.

Median prices at Avalon Beach on Sydney’s Northern Beaches climbed by a yearly pace of $870,000 to $2.803million, or a rise of 45 per cent, for homes near Barrenjoey High School.

Nearby Newport saw house prices surge $805,000 to $2.675million, or 43 per cent in a year, in the Newport Public School catchment.

In Cronulla, in Sydney’s Sutherland Shire, house prices increased $650,000 to $2.1million, or by 44.8 per cent, for homes near Burraneer Bay Public School. 

Victoria's Mornington Peninsula south-east of Melbourne did well too with house prices at Mount Eliza (pictured) up $605,000 to $1.93million or 45.7 per cent or they were near Kunyung Primary School

Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula south-east of Melbourne did well too with house prices at Mount Eliza (pictured) up $605,000 to $1.93million or 45.7 per cent or they were near Kunyung Primary School

On the Central Coast north of Sydney, Woy Woy house prices climbed by $255,000 to $870,000, or 41.5 per cent, if properties were near Woy Woy Public School.

Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula south-east of Melbourne did well too with house prices at Mount Eliza up $605,000 to $1.93million, or 45.7 per cent, near Kunyung Primary School.

In Brisbane, West End house prices went up by $390,000 to $1.325million, or 41.7 per cent, if the house was in the West End State School catchment.

Domain’s chief of research and economics Nicola Powell said annual mid-point price growth for houses near schools was often up to 20 percentage points higher than homes in the rest of the same suburb.

‘It shows that Australians are prepared to pay for easy access to public schools,’ she said.

‘When people are looking for a home, they’re looking for a lifestyle, and education is a big part of that picture, be it in the inner-city suburbs or the coastal regions of Australia.’

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