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Housing Finance for Owner Occupation
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    Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

    This collection is a monthly collection of Housing Finance commitments by Australian-resident lending institutions for the construction or purchase of owner-occupied dwellings. Commitments of finance for the purchase of land, or for the construction and purchase of dwellings for rental or resale are excluded from this collection as they are considered to be personal and commercial finance activity respectively.

    The collection results are released monthly in Housing Finance for Owner Occupation, Australia (ABS Cat No 5609.0), Lending Finance, Australia (ABS Cat No 5671.0), with more detailed data accessible on Ausstats, the ABS subscriber service. Other data may be available on request.

    New housing finance commitments are a leading economic indicator of the building cycle and an important indicator of households confidence in the economy. The survey results are used for analytical purposes within the ABS and by financial institutions, the Reserve Bank of Australia, governments, policy advisers, industry bodies, researchers and economists.

    The survey population is all Australian-resident lending institutions.

    The survey frame which seeks to cover the survey population comprises all banks authorised under the Banking Act of 1959, permanent building societies and credit unions, all lending institutions bound by the Financial Corporations Act (FCA) of 1974, and is supplemented by other known significant lending institutions such as insurance companies and superannuation funds, general government enterprises, securitisation vehicles, and institutions subject to state government regulation.

    The frame coverage is conceptually good for banks, building societies, credit unions, and financial institutions subject to the FCA, where we are informed by the Reserve Bank of any additions to the frame. For securitisation vehicles, we use the frame for the securitisation collection conducted in financial accounts section, and for the remaining lending institutions where no definitive lists exist, we rely on the success of media scans and other sources to maintain frame coverage.

    All banks and permanent building societies are included in the sample of lenders for the Housing Finance statistics. For other lenders, the largest lenders to individuals for secured housing finance for owner occupation are included so that, together with banks and building societies, at least 95% of total Australian finance commitments for owner occupied housing is covered, and at least 90% of each State total is covered. While many smaller contributors to the Other Lenders series are excluded under these coverage criteria, at least 70% of finance commitments by other lenders are covered by the sample of lenders.

    While an annual collection was once conducted to maintain and update the survey coverage, the last of these was conducted (partially) in 2002. From 2003, it is suggested that a new method of selecting a sample will be employed using APRA assets information. See Database 'NSW Financial Surveys WDB', View 'By Category', Document 'Sample Selection for Lending activity collections' for details.

    New lenders are included as their lending for owner occupied housing becomes sufficiently large.


    Conceptual framework
    The Housing Finance collection measures the number and value of secured commitments to finance owner-occupied housing made by Australian-resident financial institutions during the reference period (a calendar month). A finance commitment is a firm offer to provide finance which has been accepted by the client. For a commitment to finance, a loan contract between lender and borrower should have been signed or be about to be signed. A commitment is published by Lender Type according to the lender on the loan contract.

    Secured Housing Finance for owner occupation is secured finance to individuals for the purchase/construction of dwellings for owner occupation, and for alterations and additions to existing owner-occupied dwellings. Refinancing where the lender is changed is also included.

    Main outputs

    1. The total number and total value of secured housing finance commitments.
    2. The number and value of commitments to finance the construction of dwellings
    3. The number and value of commitments to finance the purchase of new dwellings
    4. The number and value of commitments to finance the purchase of established dwellings (including refinancing of a person's existing dwelling if refinanced through a different lender).

    State (standard classification).
    Lender type (Banks, Permanent Building Societies, Wholesale Lenders nec, Other Lenders).

    Other concepts (summary)
    The collection also obtains information on whether commitments are for first home buyers, and whether commitments are for loans where the rate of interest is fixed for two years or more.

    New South Wales
    South Australia
    Western Australia
    Northern Territory

    Comments and/or Other Regions


    Frequency comments
    The Collection is an annual longitudinal collection, where repeated measures are taken of the annual selected sample - one measure each month for a total of 12 annually.


    • Monthly Data available from 1975
    • Refinancing series available separately from 1991 (previously included with established dwelling finance)
    • Wholesale Lenders series (formerly Mortgage Managers) available from July 1995
    • The Wholesale Lenders series replaces the Mortgage Manager series from June 2000
    • Houses and Other Dwellings breakdown combined into a single All Dwellings series in October 2000.


    Data availability comments
    The collection results are released monthly in Housing Finance for Owner Occupation, Australia (ABS Cat No 5609.0) and Lending Finance, Australia (ABS Cat No 5671.0), with more detailed data accessible on Ausstats, the ABS subscriber service. Other data may be available on request.

    08/01/2009 10:42 AM

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