The Australian home lending market cooled a little in January with the ABS this morning reporting that the number of new dwellings fell 3.5%, seasonally adjusted. However, the overall value of dwellings only dipped 0.6% on the month.
That implies bigger loans, which the ABS confirmed, saying “the average loan size for all owner-occupied housing commitments rose $3,700 to $346,600” from December 2014 to January 2015.
While the overall data shows some cooling in the number of new loans in January, the trend in investment lending (which hit a new high) combined with both the total and percentage of investment property will be worrying the RBA.
Likewise the increase of more than 1% in owner-occupier loan size will be of interest to the regulators given that owners appear to be losing out investors when bidding on properties.