If you’re considering buying a property in 2023, there are a few things you need to be aware of.
It’s not exactly news the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) have been keeping a close eye on the property market and housing borrowing.
In 2021, after a surge in property prices across the country, the APRA decided to raise the serviceability requirement for new borrowers from 2.5 to 3.0 percentage points.
Essentially, that meant that lenders had to assess whether borrowers could afford to make repayments on their home loan at an interest rate 3 per cent higher than the lender’s rate.
Fast forward to 2023, and interest rates have risen beyond the 3 per cent buffer recommended by APRA. With the cash rate increasing sharply and lenders lifting their interest rates to more than 5 per cent, many borrowers are now being assessed at a serviceability rate of more than.
For example, suppose you’re applying for a loan of $550,000 with an average variable interest rate of 5.48 per cent.
According to the current serviceability requirements, your lender will need to evaluate your ability to make repayments at an interest rate 3 per cent higher than their rate.
This means that your lender will need to see that you can meet repayments of around $4,222, while your actual repayments would be $3,116 per month.
Unfortunately, these tighter serviceability requirements and higher borrowing costs are making it harder for some Aussies to enter the property market or refinance high-LVR existing loans.
Despite continued inflation and multiple cash rate hikes by the RBA, the APRA has announced that they do not plan to make any changes to their macroprudential policy measures yet.
This means that if you’re planning to apply for a loan in 2023,