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Save Our Sydney Suburbs (NSW) Inc.
News Release January 2006

Housing Affordability - news release scores a hit!

Hi SOS Members

The news release we told you about yesterday paid off.

Housing cost worst in world
From: Daily Telegraph

January 27, 2006

FORGET the high prices of London, New York or Tokyo. When it comes to buying a home Sydney is the least affordable of them all.

Sydney was ranked seventh on an international housing affordability survey and is the only non-US city to make the top 10.
The Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey for the third quarter of 2005, conducted by a US-based consultancy group, also warned that Australia had the biggest housing crisis in the world.

The survey divided the average house price by the average income to come up with a "median multiple rating".

In Sydney, the average house price was $520,000 while the average household income is about $61,000, giving it a rating of 8.5.

Housing Industry Association chief economist Simon Tennent said while housing affordability in Sydney was showing signs of improving it was still a disgrace on a world scale.

"It remains a massive hurdle for people on middle to low incomes," he said.
"If you look at what average income is on a city basis we are the least affordable country in the world."

All metropolitan areas in Australia with more than one million people were ranked "severely unaffordable", with ratings of 5.1 or higher.

Since 1996, the rate has risen more than three points in Sydney and more than two points in Australia's other capital cities. During at least part of the 1980s, the median multiple was rated "affordable" at 3 or below.

New York ranked one place behind Sydney, on 7.9, while London was outside the top 10 with 6.9.

Tokyo failed to rank at all, nudged out by the likes of Hobart, Adelaide and Melbourne, which all made the top 20.

Mr Tennent blamed the Government's smart growth strategies, which restrict the release and zoning of land, for housing unaffordability.

"If you look at the most affordable cities around the world they don't have these restrictive zoning problems," he said.

Residents group Save Our Suburbs president Dr Tony Recsei, who opposes forced rezoning and overdevelopment, said: "We have gone backwards. In 1981 it only took 4.9 years of income to buy a house."

Tony Recsei

President, Save Our Suburbs

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