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Affordability Crisis! Have Australian property prices peaked?

housing affordability crisis Australian property

Rising property prices, poor wage growth and huge competition for the few homes that are on the market.  Is this a sign that Australian property prices have peaked?

This could be the headline of any article about the Sydney or Melbourne property markets in 2017, but this was the tone of one article appearing in the Sunday Telegraph in January 1950.

Realestate.com.au shared this fascinating headline “One chance in 5 of buying a new home” and compared some statistics from 1950 with 2017.

housing affordability Australian property

Source : realestate.com.au – Sunday Telegraph January 15, 1950

Comparing Housing Affordability (1950 vs 2017)

* In 2017 Money .  Source : realestate.com.au



Average Home Price



Average Weekly Wage



Typical Deposit

(40 weeks wage)

(76 weeks wage)

The article in 1950 concluded that housing affordability post the second world war had reached a point making it nearly impossible for first home buyers to afford a home of their own.

While affordability may be even more difficult right now, it is good to remember that buying your first home has never been easy.  In fact, it seems every generation in Australia believes they have been hard done by in trying to get their first foot on the property investment ladder.

Whilst we all want to live in the inner city or next to the beach, we forget that our parents generation settled for a house in the outer suburbs as their first home.

And another important reminder from this article is, don’t expect housing affordability to improve any time soon.  Imagine if you were sitting on the sidelines of the Sydney property market back in 1950, waiting for housing affordability to improve.  How much rent would you have paid, and how much capital gain would you have foregone waiting for that day to never come…

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Australian property housing affordability crisis

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About the author


Craig is an Australian Expat and the founder of The Australian Expat Investor. Craig is passionate about investing, and while Craig cannot give personal financial or tax advice, Craig enjoys sharing investing, tax, and other tips for Australian expats to help them to build their wealth while living abroad and get the most out of their time living overseas. Get his free ebook on 9 Financial Surprises That Could Cost Australian Expats Thousands of Dollars

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