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Consumers Reject Negative Headlines

Despite daily media articles declaring that property prices are set to fall 15% or 20% or more, most Australians don’t believe it.

That’s according to the latest Finder Consumer Sentiment Tracker.

The Finder survey sought people’s views of what they expect to happen with house prices in the next 12 months – and very few, it seems, are expecting prices to fall.

Even in Sydney and Melbourne, where economists and commentators have declared prices to be falling already, only about 20% of consumers believe prices in their local area will fall in the next 12 months.

  • In Sydney, 50% believe prices will rise and another 28% believe there will be no change.
  • In Melbourne, 56% expect property prices to increase and 25% expect them to stay the same.

And consumers are even more bullish about house prices in Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane.

  • In Brisbane, 63% expect prices to rise and 23% expect no change. Only 14% expect prices to decline.
  • In Perth, 58% expect price increases and another 29% foresee no change to house values. Only 13% expect prices to fall.

It seems to me that Australians are a lot smarter than the media thinks.

They know there’s a significant difference between what the data shows and what the media says it shows.

While many headlines have declared that prices are falling across Australia, the research reports on which these articles are based don’t actually show prices decreasing across the nation.

The CoreLogic price reports actually show prices rising in most markets – indeed, out of the 15 major market jurisdictions in Australia (that’s eight capital cities and seven state regional markets), 12 of the 15 recorded growth in house prices in May.

It highlights the importance for consumers, who want to know what’s really happening in real estate, of getting a copy of the actual report.

Read what the report says, rather than what the media says is in the report. The CoreLogic reports are freely available and the numbers tell a very different story to the headlines.

It’s also important to be aware of alternative sources of price data, other than CoreLogic. While CoreLogic’s view of the nation’s property markets tends to be rather negative, as their prime motivation is generating publicity through pessimistic analysis, there are other research companies which are publishing price data that is a lot more positive.

The alternative sources include SQM Research and Propertyology.

Overall, it’s refreshing to observe that while so many headlines are telling us real estate is crashing or will crash, the data disagrees and – according to the Finder survey – most Australians don’t believe the crisis headlines.

Part of the reason for that, I think, is that Australians are aware that economists and other commentators have been predicting a collapse in house prices constantly for the past 15 years – and it’s never happened.

Two years ago, they told us to expect huge decreases in house prices because of Covid but what happened, in stark contrast, was a property boom.

Australian consumers are no longer listening to the doomsayers.


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