Cairns real estate agents, mortgage brokers bemoan lack of residential investment

first_imgRoss Moller – Principal LJ Hooker Cairns Edge Hill.ONE of Cairns’ most seasoned residential real estate agents believes a nationwide lending crackdown is “absolutely killing investment” in the city.LJ Hooker Cairns Edge Hill principal Ross Moller has become the latest property industry figure to slam The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) for introducing new restrictions on interest-only mortgage lending.“It slowed the Sydney and Melbourne markets, which was the desired effect, but regional Australia doesn’t need a slow down,” he said. “What they’ve done is cause major issues in economies everywhere.”Under the APRA restrictions, aimed at reducing risk in “overheated” housing markets like Sydney and Melbourne, lenders must ensure interest-only loans comprise no more than 30 per cent of all new mortgages.More from newsCairns home ticks popular internet search terms3 days agoTen auction results from ‘active’ weekend in Cairns3 days agoMr Moller, a local real estate industry veteran, said the level of investment in Cairns had “dropped significantly”.“It’s a buyers’ market in Cairns, we’re certainly not booming like Sydney and Melbourne,” he said. Cairns mortgage broker Roger Ward wrote to Finance Minister Mathias Cormann recently, arguing that the new APRA limitations needed to be “postcode specific”.“The outcome of such a move could even drive additional investment into regional Australia,” he wrote A spokesman for Acting Treasurer and Minister for Revenue and Financial Services, Kelly O’Dwyer, said the government recognised that “risks in the housing market have the potential to differ from region to region”.“The Government announced in the 2017-18 Budget that it will modernise the Banking Act to make it clear that APRA has the ability to use geographically-based restrictions on the provision of credit where APRA considers it appropriate,” he said. “It will continue to be a matter for APRA to independently determine how and where it uses these powers, in consultation with the Council of Financial Regulators.”last_img