Yet as we saw earlier in the week, we know that owner-occupier housing lending had begun to pick up again, even prior to the February rate cut.
Sydney goes parabolic
The Lending Finance data tells us where the investment loans are being written - in a word, Sydney.
This comes off the back of New South Wales owner-occupier commitments which ripped through a state record $6 billion in the same month.
This is both extraordinary and unprecedented.
Throw in the increasing weight of foreign capital as the Australian dollar depreciates and the inner Sydney housing market could be in for a blockbuster 15 months.
Meanwhile the burst of activity in Western Australia is now clearly tapering off.
Preliminary auction clearance rates on Saturday of a massive 83.3 percent reported suggest that a red hot Sydney market has kicked off once again in 2015.
The monthly level of investor lending in this seasonal series is now incredibly more than 2.5 times the volumes we were seeing only 3 years ago, and still rising fast.
It is imperative that those buying in the harbour city have a clear understanding of which suburbs have already blown off (cf. the inner west in particular) and which have yet to kick forward so materially in this cycle.
Market defies gloomers
Not only have prices not crashed, activity in the market appears to be accelerating - how did Sydney's housing bears get it so unfathomably wrong?
On balance, the main reason is likely that they neglected to note the chronic undersupply of dwellings in inner Sydney caused by the best part of a decade of under-building, which only now is being addressed by record high unit approvals.
Even in 2014 median apartment rents continued to increase by another 3.85 to 4.3 percent depending on your data source.
The median unit price in Sydney at the end of Q4 2014 was around $606,500, with median apartment rents of around $540/week implying gross yields of approximately 4.6 percent.
Vacancy rates in inner Sydney are still only around 1.5 percent (despite the onset of an apartment construction boom with all-time record home starts) which is a veritable world away from the elevated vacancy rates which helped to pull up stumps on the preceding boom in 2004.
How much longer will this boom run?
One thing that we can now say with 100 percent certainty is that high interest rates will not be responsible for calling time on this property boom.
Just as in 2003/4 this market boom may simply have to die of "old age" when gross yields fall to unacceptably low levels, perhaps with vacancy rates rising significantly helping to drag down rents.
How low investors will be prepared to bid gross yields is unknown for we are now into uncharted territory, both in terms of the volume of loan approvals and in terms of mortgage rates.
By way of comparison the cash rate in December 2003 was hiked by 25bps to 5.25 percent - today the cash rate is just 2.25 percent with a 71 percent chance of it being cut by 25bps to only 2 percent as soon as March 3.
Futures markets see a 2 percent cash rate this calendar year as getting close to a stone dead certainty.
Consider a stylised example within which median apartment rents were to increase by another ~4 percent over the next 5 quarters to $560/week.
If this seemingly endless supply of investors was prepared to bid gross yields 0.5 percent lower - broadly reflecting expected shifts in the cost of borrowing - all the way down to 4.1 percent, then this simple model implies that the median apartment price would soar by another 17 percent or more than $100,000 to above $700,000 - which is a frankly terrifying prospect for first homebuyers.
Could this happen?
With 5 year fixed rate mortgages available from under 4.7 percent, 3 year fixed rates from under 4.3 percent and 1 year fixed rates even advertised with a 3 handle, it is far from inconceivable, particularly with February's rate cut already adding further fuel to the fire.
Whether or not this plays out will now be decided by how quickly apartment completions come online and whether APRA intervenes directly in the mortgage lending market.
While property viewings in the inner suburbs of Brisbane are increasingly crawling with interested buyers, this will be offset by a number of regions within which property markets are in a significant decline, particularly certain mining towns and regions impacted by the collapse in coal prices.
The way in which housing markets from different countries are compared to each other is most often by taking the median price of a house and dividing it by an average measure of household income to produce a multiple.
Looking at how long it would take to pay off an average house with an average income is a handy shortcut measure of housing affordability and a very easy means of comparison.
Yet even the sum total of all forms of household debt is comfortably dwarfed by the huge value of Australia's 9,448,300 dwellings as estimated by the Australian Bureau of Statistics at a massive $5.4 trillion.
Australia-wide one of the gauges or indicators over time of how much property is bought by investors is the rate of home ownership, which seems likely to slide in the decades ahead.
Most property investors are looking for locations where the population is expected to grow over time and therefore they have been very heavily focused on capital cities such as the inner suburbs of Sydney, Melbourne, and next up, Brisbane.
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