Australian house prices set to surge across the country
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Australian house prices set to surge across the country

A new KPMG report reveals one capital will punch well above its weight

Wed, Sep 27, 2023 11:30amGrey Clock 2 min

Hobart is set to be the new property hotspot over the next two years as house prices surge across the country, a new report from KPMG has shown.

The southern capital is expected to overtake Perth, where house prices will be strongest in the short term, rising by 8.4 percent over the second half of 2024, to increase by 14.2 percent in 2025. 

Not surprisingly, the Melbourne and Sydney markets will experience long term price rises, up by 12 percent and 10.3 percent respectively to June 2025.

The KPMG report revealed that prices will increase nationally by 4.9 percent over the next nine months before a 9.4 percent uptick by June 2025.

KPMG chief economist Dr Brendan Rynne said a lack of supply had overtaken concerns about the impact of interest rate rises.

“Despite high interest rates, constrained supply will likely dominate the factors influencing property prices in the short term and result in continued price gains in most markets during FY24,” Dr Rynne said. “House and unit prices will then accelerate further in the next financial year as dwelling supply continues to be limited, due to scarcity of available land, falling levels of approvals and slower or more costly construction activity.”

Demand will be further fuelled by higher levels of migration, he said, while anticipated interest rate cuts in 2025 could well draw more buyers into the market, putting further pressure on prices. From a supply perspective, he said barriers for developers building new homes was hindering the availability of future stock.

Dr Rynne said the impact of mortgage stress was still a potential factor putting downward pressure on prices but had been outstripped by market demand.

“There are some factors pushing the other way – the main one being mortgage stress,” he said. “First-time buyers now need to use around half their earnings on mortgage payments – a significant rise from a third just three years ago. 

“We estimate around $350 billion of mortgages, or half of all fixed rate credit will expire this year – covering 880,000 Australian households. The remaining 38 percent of fixed rate credit, which includes about 450,000 loan facilities, will expire in 2024 and beyond. Some homeowners who previously locked in low rates might be unable to pay – and won’t be able to refinance to a lower and competitive rate.”


Consumers are going to gravitate toward applications powered by the buzzy new technology, analyst Michael Wolf predicts

Chris Dixon, a partner who led the charge, says he has a ‘very long-term horizon’

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Wild cities and concrete corridors: How AI is reimagining the landscape

A new AI-driven account by leading landscape architect Jon Hazelwood pushes the boundaries on the role of ‘complex nature’ in the future of our cities

By Robyn Willis
Wed, Dec 6, 2023 2 min

Drifts of ground cover plants and wildflowers along the steps of the Sydney Opera House, traffic obscured by meadow-like planting and kangaroos pausing on city streets.

This is the way our cities could be, as imagined by landscape architect Jon Hazelwood, principal at multi-disciplinary architectural firm Hassell. He has been exploring the possibilities of rewilding urban spaces using AI for his Instagram account, Naturopolis_ai with visually arresting outcomes.

“It took me a few weeks to get interesting results,” he said. “I really like the ephemeral nature of the images — you will never see it again and none of those plants are real. 

“The AI engine makes an approximation of a grevillea.”

Hazelwood chose some of the most iconic locations in Australia, including the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, as well as international cities such as Paris and London, to demonstrate the impact of untamed green spaces on streetscapes, plazas and public space.

He said he hopes to provoke a conversation about the artificial separation between our cities and the broader environment, exploring ways to break down the barriers and promote biodiversity.

“A lot of the planning (for public spaces) is very limited,” Hazelwood said. “There are 110,000 species of plants in Australia and we probably use about 12 in our (public) planting schemes. 

“Often it’s for practical reasons because they’re tough and drought tolerant — but it’s not the whole story.”

Hazelwood pointed to the work of UK landscape architect Prof Nigel Dunnett, who has championed wild garden design in urban spaces. He has drawn interest in recent years for his work transforming the brutalist apartment block at the Barbican in London into a meadow-like environment with diverse plantings of grasses and perennials.

Hazelwood said it is this kind of ‘complex nature’ that is required for cities to thrive into the future, but it can be hard to convince planners and developers of the benefits.

“We have been doing a lot of work on how we get complex nature because complexity of species drives biodiversity,” he said. 

“But when we try to propose the space the questions are: how are we going to maintain it? Where is the lawn?

“A lot of our work is demonstrating you can get those things and still provide a complex environment.” 

At the moment, Hassell together with the University of Melbourne is trialling options at the Hills Showground Metro Station in Sydney, where the remaining ground level planting has been replaced with more than 100 different species of plants and flowers to encourage diversity without the need for regular maintenance. But more needs to be done, Hazelwood said.

“It needs bottom-up change,” he said. ““There is work being done at government level around nature positive cities, but equally there needs to be changes in the range of plants that nurseries grow, and in the way our city landscapes are maintained and managed.”

And there’s no AI option for that. 


Consumers are going to gravitate toward applications powered by the buzzy new technology, analyst Michael Wolf predicts

Chris Dixon, a partner who led the charge, says he has a ‘very long-term horizon’

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