Vendors taking longer to sell

While housing affordability may well be at record lows it appears that the tide seems to be turning in favour of buyers. Buyers are taking longer to purchase and vendors need to be willing to lower their asking price.

RP Data research director Tim Lawless said the changes in the property environment mean the time is ripe for property investors to get back into the market.

"While it's great news for cashed up buyers, vendors on the other hand need to become re-accustomed to the change in market conditions," he said.

Mr. Lawless said another positive sign for investors was that rental yields were showing the first signs of improvement in over 18 months.

Rental yields express the return property investors make on their investment, in percentage terms. It's calculated by dividing the annual rental income by the purchase price of the property. So for example, if a landlord is getting $400 a week for a property which was bought for $450,000, the yield would be 4.6 per cent.

Yields fell last year as house prices rose quicker than rental rates. But as house price grew and the tight rental market leads to higher rents, yields are starting to pick up.

The only capital cities to not show an improvement in rental yields between March 2007 and March this year were Adelaide, Brisbane and Melbourne where house prices are still growing strongly.

According to RP Data there are 180 suburbs around the country returning gross rental yields of 6 per cent or higher. About a third of those suburbs are in capital cities, while the rest were in regional towns, with resource-rich and coastal areas performing particularly well.

The best rental yields were in outer suburbs, with good transport links where house prices are low in relations to the rents being charged.

Over the last month an average of just over 130,000 residential properties have been on the market each week. This is up from a weekly average of just 73,570 in the same period last year.

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Published on May 5-th, 2008 in Property Investment
Damon Rasheed is the CEO of Rate Detective, an Australian financial service comparison sites specialising in Life Insurance, Income Protection Insurance and home loans. Damon holds a Master's Degree in Economics from the University of Melbourne and has been involved in many start-up internet businesses.
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