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Mortgage Advice Blog

Get the latest news and tips about mortgage finance and the property market. Scott Miller, mortgage broker from Advanced Mortgage Solutions comments on housing and lending.

May's Newsletter

Published by Scott Miller on Sunday, May 09, 2010 in



The last two months have seen many interesting developments in regards to property and of course this years budget is just around the corner.

The Budget

 

 

 

 

The first quarter of 2010 has seen the growth of late 2009 slow quite markedly. The issue is understanding why and how long this slowdown will last.

House prices have flattened this year adding weight to the concept that the growth of late 2009 was driven predominantly by lack of stock on the market not an economic rebound. While this continues to be the case the 'fear' that John Key has generated in the residential investment market due to his proposed tax changes to residential investment property has had a ‘lead weight' effect on property investment.

Our belief is that until budget 2010 is released in May and it is clearly understood what changes are being made to the tax laws around residential investment property most investors are sitting on their hands (and their cash) which will continue to hold the momentum the market had in late 2009 back. As such the average days to sell a property has lengthened to its highest level since June 2009 and is quite indicative of the true state of the housing market.

One highlight was today's unemployment figures announcement. There was an unprecedented 1%+ drop in the unemployment levels in New Zealand for the month of April. This has increased the possibility of an interest rate rise in June 2010 instead of the more widely predicted July increase. However Dr Bollard has indicated that he believes interest rates will rise at a much slower rate in similar situations in the past. I personally don't see this so much as a negative influence as much as I see this as a necessary part of the property sectors recovery.

Kiwis continue to deleverage their asset position (repay debt while interest rates are low) and this puts us in a good position for growth in the not too distant future (as in 2011) as pent up desire to invest and grow will at some stage be unleashed stimulating the economy. We cannot help but believe that the 2011 Ruby World Cup will be a strong catalyst for our 'real' rebound.

Our recommended borrowing strategy has not changed greatly in the past 6 months and at the risk of repeating ourselves we cannot recommend anything else other than floating rates or six - twelve month fixed as a preferred option. Variable rates remain at record lows, while most fixed rates have fallen in the past month they remain very high in relation to floating rates and this is more a sign of the market ‘overpricing' long term rates in the back half of 2009 which was driven by the price war the banks created for term deposits and not improvement in market conditions. Stick with the shorter term funding but keep your payments above the minimum required to repay, perhaps assuming rates of 1% higher than today.

Please find this useful link below and make your vote - it is best your voice is heard.

Do you support tax changes to investment property?        

YES  /   NO

Interest Rates

So with the new unemployment figures and the direction in which they are heading together with the contents of the Budget (which is due to released on 20th May), will impact the Reserve Bank’s review of the Official Cash Rate early next month. The consensus is now that the Reserve Bank will start increasing rates as early as June. Increases are expected to be in small increments of around quarter of a percent.  How many we have will depend on how strong our economic recovery is. 

As mentioned above a drop in unemployment is a strong indication that the economy is improving. The other significant event that is severely affecting the international financial markets, is the debt crisis in Greece and Portugal and whether it will extend to other larger European countries such as Spain, UK and Italy. This crisis has been the cause of the rapid appreciation of our currency particularly against the Euro which is now up over 10% over the past month to 0.56.  This has had a major effect on world equity markets which are wobbling - some are down over 3% this week. Two years ago, as the global financial crisis was unfolding, individual governments were sorting out the banking system. Now the world bankers will have to focus their attention on sorting out some individual countries.

Tip of the month:

 

 

 

 

 

{tag_recipientfirstname} if your home loans are on floating I believe it is time to look at your fixing options. Interest rates are going to go up and although Dr Bollards intention is to increase them slowly you never know what might happen. Feel free to contact me or email me to go over the best interest rate solutions for your needs.


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