A proud nation of baby-makers ensures housing demand grows
Plenty of real estate market watchers quote populations stats when “reading the tea leaves” for our industry. It makes sense that more people means greater housing demand. So some have pointed to slowing overseas migration as a warning sign for property prices. Here’s a handy reminder of the facts:
It takes some time for the ABS to release the data so the latest we have is for the year to Sept 30th 2010. And that showed net overseas migration down 40% on that same quarter a year earlier. That’s a sharp drop. But it also shows that our natural increase in population accounted for almost half of our population growth in the year. Australians stand proud, we’re amongst the best reproducers in the western world! And we’re getting pretty good at living longer too. So easing overseas arrivals won’t stop our growth.
And yes in case you missed it, our population grew 1.6% over that year – a jump of almost 350,000 (or twice the size of Townsville’s population) added to our numbers. Queensland’s resident numbers grew by almost 1,600 per week. So slower growth is still very strong growth.
Demographer Bernard Salt, writing in a recent Australian Newspaper column, remarks on the government’s own forecasts for continued growth. He points out that while the pollies talk about numbers dropping their own Federal budget papers show they’re still expecting net overseas migration to return to 180,000 next year.
If Dick Smith and the other ‘small Australia’ proponents have any hope they’ll have to convince Australians to stop having babies. Good luck with that.