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1380.0.55.012 - Perspectives on Regional Australia, Housing Arrangements - Homes Owned with a Mortgage in Local Government Areas, 2011  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 19/11/2013  First Issue
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Introduction
Homes owned with a mortgage in Australia
Homes owned with a mortgage in the states and territories
Homes owned with a mortgage in local government areas
Homes owned with a mortgage: state and territory maps by LGA
Conclusion
Endnotes


INTRODUCTION

Home mortgage costs, according to data collected in the Census, have shown large increases from 2006 to 2011 in Australia. Median monthly mortgage repayments rose from $1,300 in 2006 to $1,800 in 2011, an increase of 38.5%. Overall, mortgage and rental costs have increased more than wages; the median weekly household income increased from $1,027 in 2006 to $1,234 in 2011, up 20.2%. The median weekly household rent rose to $285 from $191 in 2006, an increase of 49.2%.

This article focuses on households that have a mortgage for the dwelling in which they were counted on Census Night. The Census provides a snapshot in time of housing tenure and housing mortgage repayments in Australia. Housing costs are often the largest regular expense for many Australians and this article looks at how the costs of owning a home vary in regions across Australia, and how these costs changed between 2006 and 2011. Data from the Survey of Income and Housing shows the proportion of average weekly income spent on housing costs for owners with a mortgage was 18% in 2011-12, including rate payments (general and water) (Endnote 1). In this article, mortgage repayments are analysed and for many people this is the largest portion of their total housing costs.

It is important for local communities to understand the changing costs of housing in their local area, as this impacts on where people choose to live, and the local service and infrastructure planning for a region. Knowing the number of householders with a mortgage in a Local Government Area (LGA), and their housing costs, can assist local governments, businesses and social service providers to understand the financial circumstances of clients and customers.

This article is the second in a series which uses Census data to explore home ownership and rental rates across Australia, in the states and territories, and in LGAs. The first article was Perspectives on Regional Australia, Housing Arrangements - Home Ownership in Local Government Areas, 2011 (cat. no. 1380.0.55.010). A forthcoming article will analyse household rental costs.

Regional data used in this article are provided in the datacube available via the Downloads tab.


HOMES OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE IN AUSTRALIA

Just over two-thirds (67.0%) of Australian households owned their home in 2011, down from 68.1% in 2006. Of these households, some owned their home outright and some with a mortgage. Between the 2006 and 2011 Censuses, the proportion of households that owned their dwelling with a mortgage increased (from 34.1% in 2006 to 34.9% in 2011), while the proportion of households that owned their dwelling outright decreased (from 34.0% in 2006 to 32.1% in 2011).



PROPORTION OF HOMES(a), by Selected Tenure Type, 2006 and 2011
Chart: Proportion of homes, by selected tenure type, 2006 and 2011
(a) Total occupied private dwellings, excluding 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011


Mortgage costs in Australia have changed over the five years from 2006 to 2011, with median monthly mortgage repayments increasing from $1,300 in 2006 to $1,800 in 2011, an increase of 38.5 per cent. Mortgage costs, as reported in the Census, can reflect amounts that are more than the minimum repayment that a household is required to make as households may choose to reduce their mortgages at a faster rate.

For other national housing statistics, see Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2011-12 (cat. no. 4130.0).


HOMES OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE IN THE STATES AND TERRITORIES

In 2011, the proportion of dwellings owned with a mortgage was highest in the Australian Capital Territory and Western Australia, 38.9% and 37.8% respectively, and lowest in the Northern Territory (30.6%). Between 2006 and 2011, all states and territories, except the Northern Territory, recorded an increase in the proportion of dwellings owned with a mortgage. New South Wales had the highest increase, from 31.9% in 2006 to 33.4% in 2011.


PROPORTION OF HOMES(a) OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE, by State and Territory, 2006 and 2011

Chart: Proportion of homes owned with a mortgage, by state and territory, 2006 and 2011
(a) Total occupied private dwellings, excluding 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011


Mortgage Repayments

The following table presents the median mortgage repayments in each state and territory in Australia, in 2006 and 2011, and shows the change over that period. The Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory reported the highest median mortgage repayments of over $2,000, followed by New South Wales ($1,993) and Western Australia ($1,950).

The Northern Territory recorded the biggest increase in median monthly mortgage repayments (in dollar terms), increasing to $2,058 in 2011 from $1,300 in 2006, an increase of $758 (or 58.3%).


MEDIAN MONTHLY MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS(a), by State and Territory, 2006 and 2011

State/Territory
Median Mortgage Repayment
Change

2006
($/month)
2011
($/month)
($)
(%)

New South Wales
1 517
1 993
476
31.4
Victoria
1 254
1 700
446
35.6
Queensland
1 300
1 850
550
42.3
South Australia
1 018
1 500
482
47.3
Western Australia
1 213
1 950
737
60.8
Tasmania
867
1 300
433
49.9
Northern Territory
1 300
2 058
758
58.3
Australian Capital Territory
1 500
2 167
667
44.5
Australia(b)
1 300
1 800
500
38.5

(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings which were owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme by a member of the household. Excludes 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) Includes Other Territories.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011.


The fastest increase (in percentage terms) in median monthly mortgage repayments occurred in Western Australia, increasing by 60.8% to $1,950 in 2011 from $1,213 in 2006. New South Wales and Victoria had the slowest growth in median monthly mortgage repayments, with 31.4% and 35.6% respectively


HOMES OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS

In 2011, the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage varied considerably across LGAs as shown in the following map. High proportions of homes owned with a mortgage were clustered around the outer areas of capitals cities, consistent with urban expansion as new land is released for housing development. For more detail, see the maps showing LGAs in each state and territory.


HOMES OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE(a), by Local Government Area, Australia, 2011
Map: Proportion of homes owned with a mortgage, by Local Government Area, Autralia, 2011
(a) The number of occupied private dwellings which were owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme by a member of the household, expressed as a proportion of total occupied private dwellings. Excludes 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.


High proportion of homes owned with a mortgage

Many factors can influence the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage in a region. These factors can vary from region to region and may include:
  • economic conditions, such as home loan interest rates, construction costs and the ability to resell the property;
  • the affordability and availability of land and housing;
  • people's willingness to get a mortgage and their life cycle stage;
  • population change, including growth and turnover; and
  • people's desire to live and buy a house in the region, including factors such as the amenity of the region, availability of services, facilities, education and employment opportunities.

The LGAs in Australia with the highest proportions of homes owned with a mortgage were characterised by urban expansion and growing populations, located on the fringe or outer areas of capital cities. Of the ten LGAs with the highest proportion of homes owned with a mortgage in Australia, four were located in Victoria, three in Western Australia, two in South Australia and one in New South Wales; all with a proportion over 50%.

The LGA with the highest proportion of homes owned with a mortgage was Serpentine-Jarrahdale, south east of Perth in Western Australia, with a rate of 55.3%. This compared with 34.9% for Australia and 37.8% for Western Australia.


PROPORTION OF HOMES(a) OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE, Ten Highest Local Government Areas, 2011

Local Government AreaState/Territory
Homes owned with a mortgage
Total occupied private dwellings
Median age(b)

(%)
2011
(no.)
2006-2011
(% change)
(years)

Serpentine-Jarrahdale WA
55.3
5 643
36.7
35
Melton Vic.
55.0
34 976
38.9
32
Mallala SA
54.4
2 919
10.1
40
Wanneroo WA
53.6
49 876
36.3
32
Casey Vic.
53.1
80 471
16.8
33
Camden NSW
52.7
17 874
13.7
34
Golden Plains Vic.
51.0
6 299
14.3
39
Light SA
50.8
4 789
13.9
38
Wyndham Vic.
50.5
52 799
43.9
32
Chittering WA
50.2
1 505
27.4
41

(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings, excluding 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) Data item refers to the median age of the usually resident LGA population.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011.


Other LGAs in Western Australia with a high proportion of homes owned with a mortgage included Wanneroo and Chittering. Wanneroo encompasses both urban and rural areas and is located north of Perth on its urban fringe. Wanneroo experienced the largest population growth of all LGAs for Western Australia between 2006 and 2011, with 41,135 people (37.1%) and growth in the number of occupied private dwellings of 36.3%. Chittering is found in the Wheatbelt region of Western Australia, just beyond the north-eastern fringe of the Perth metropolitan area.

The four LGAs in Victoria with a high proportion of homes owned with a mortgage were Melton, Casey, Golden Plains and Wyndham. Melton and Casey are both less than 50 kilometres from Melbourne; Wyndham is located on the south-western fringe of Melbourne and Golden Plains is a rural area in the south-west of Victoria, between Geelong and Ballarat. Wyndham experienced the largest population growth for an LGA in Victoria, with 48,879 people (43.4%) between 2006 and 2011 and 43.9% growth in the number of occupied private dwellings.

Mallala and Light in South Australia are about an hour north of the Adelaide city centre, and offer rural living and localities with housing developments underway and planned for the future (Endnote 2).

Camden in New South Wales is located in the south-western fringe of Sydney.

As people progress through different life cycle stages and their family structures and financial situations change, so do their housing needs and preferences. People generally follow a pattern of renting in early adulthood, moving to home purchase and mortgages when forming relationships and raising a family, to owning a home outright in older age (Endnote 3). As the table above shows, the LGAs with the highest proportion of homes owned with a mortgage had median ages between 32 to 41 years, typical of the stage of life at which people tend to have a mortgage.

Low proportion of homes owned with a mortgage

The LGAs in Australia with the lowest proportions of homes owned with a mortgage were mostly located in the Northern Territory and far north Queensland and were characterised by their remoteness and high proportions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 75% or more of the populations of all the LGAs in the following table, except Ashburton in Western Australia. This LGA is a vast region in the Pilbara, known for mining, agriculture and fishing. Over 80% of the dwellings in Ashburton were rented on Census Night in 2011. The next article in this series will analyse rental rates in LGAs in more detail.


LOW PROPORTION OF HOMES(a) OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE, by Local Government Area(b), 2011

Local Government AreaState/Territory
Homes owned with a mortgage
Total occupied private dwellings
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
(%)
(no.)
(%)

East ArnhemNT
0.3
1 204
91.2
West ArnhemNT
0.4
1 027
75.3
Northern Peninsula AreaQld.
0.5
562
85.4
MacDonnellNT
0.8
1 007
84.5
Central DesertNT
1.1
665
80.0
Tiwi IslandsNT
1.6
558
87.8
Victoria-DalyNT
2.1
1 171
79.2
Halls CreekWA
2.2
729
78.2
Roper GulfNT
3.4
1 077
81.8
AshburtonWA
3.5
1 937
9.3

(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings, excluding 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) LGAs with proportions of zero and LGAs with a total occupied private dwelling count under 500 dwellings are excluded from this table.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2011.


Median monthly mortgage repayments

Median monthly mortgage repayments among LGAs varied from under $500 to over $3,000, with the highest repayments reported in some LGAs in Sydney, New South Wales and the coastal areas and mining regions of Western Australia.


MEDIAN MONTHLY MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS(a), by Local Government Area, Australia, 2011
Map: Median Monthly Mortgage Repayments, by Local Government Area, Australia, 2011
(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings which were owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme
by a member of the household. Excludes 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.


The highest median monthly mortgage repayments were around $3,000 per month, in New South Wales and Western Australia. All the LGAs in New South Wales with high mortgage costs are located in the Greater Sydney region. Cottesloe and Nedlands in Western Australia are located in the Greater Perth region, while Roebourne is located outside the Perth region.


HIGHEST MEDIAN MONTHLY MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS(a), by Local Government Area(b), 2011

Local Government AreaState/Territory
Median mortgage repayments
Homes owned with a mortgage
($/month)
(no.)

Woollahra NSW
3 250
4 762
Manly NSW
3 033
4 360
Mosman NSW
3 033
2 830
Hunters Hill NSW
3 000
1 422
Ku-ring-gai NSW
3 000
13 067
Leichhardt NSW
3 000
7 019
Pittwater NSW
3 000
7 544
Waverley NSW
3 000
5 943
CottesloeWA
3 000
696
NedlandsWA
3 000
2 000
Roebourne WA
3 000
775

(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings which were owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme by a member of the household. Excludes 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) LGAs with total occupied dwelling count under 500 dwellings are excluded from this table.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2011.


Homes owned with a mortgage over time


In all states, most LGAs (over 57%) had an increase in the proportion of dwellings owned with a mortgage. In the Northern Territory, over half (56%) of the LGAs had a decrease in the proportion of dwellings owned with a mortgage.

The LGAs with the biggest growth in homes owned with a mortgage between 2006 and 2011 are shown in the following table.


BIGGEST GROWTH IN THE PROPORTION OF DWELLINGS(a) OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE, by Local Government Area(b), 2006 and 2011

Local Government AreaState/Territory
Dwellings owned with a mortgage (%)
Difference(c) (% points)

2006
2011
2006-2011

WeipaQld.
7.9
31.1
23.2
Flinders RangesSA
29.0
34.7
5.7
WaginWA
25.9
31.2
5.3
Lower Eyre PeninsulaSA
32.3
37.4
5.1
Botany BayNSW
26.2
30.8
4.7
JerilderieNSW
20.8
25.4
4.5
Serpentine-JarrahdaleWA
50.8
55.3
4.5
StrathfieldNSW
27.0
31.2
4.3
West CoastTas.
20.2
24.5
4.3
Boyup BrookWA
23.6
27.9
4.3

(a) Total occupied private dwellings, excluding 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) LGAs with a total occupied private dwelling count under 500 dwellings are excluded from this table.
(c) This calculation is the difference between the percentages from 2006 and 2011 and uses original unrounded data.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011.


The LGA of Weipa, in far north Queensland, had the biggest increase in the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage, which increased by 23.2 percentage points from 7.9% in 2006 to 31.1% in 2011. This LGA is characterised by its remoteness and high proportion of workers in the mining industry (the main industry of employment was Metal Ore Mining) in 2011.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 18.6% of the population of Weipa at the 2011 Census. The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander households increased from 16.8% to 18.8%. The proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander households who owned their home with a mortgage more than doubled between Censuses, from 7.2% in 2006 to 14.9% in 2011.

The LGAs of Flinders Ranges and Lower Eyre Peninsula, in South Australia, and Wagin in Western Australia had an increase in the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage, of over five percentage points between 2006 and 2011.

Median monthly mortgage repayments over time

Many factors can influence the change in median mortgage repayments over time in a region, and this may reflect varying regional conditions such as their local economic circumstances, regional housing supply and demand, and the age and life stage of their local population. Other factors to consider are population growth and population turnover.

The cost of housing in a region may change due to changes in the supply of and demand for housing in the region. For example, average prices may rise because new housing is built in a region which is of a higher quality than older, existing housing, or because the area has become more attractive and people are willing to pay more to live there. In regions where house prices and mortgage repayments are increasing, repayments for new mortgages will be larger than repayments for older mortgages, so the age of mortgages can affect the median mortgage cost in a region.

The age of mortgages in a region is also related to the age and stage of life of the householders. Population change can mean there are more young people in a region who are likely to have newer mortgages.

The LGAs with the fastest growth in median mortgage repayments between 2006 and 2011 are shown in the following table. Eight of these LGAs are located in Western Australia, and there is one each in the Northern Territory and Queensland.


FASTEST GROWTH IN MEDIAN MONTHLY MORTGAGE REPAYMENTS(a), by Local Government Area(b), 2006 and 2011

Local Government AreaState/Territory
Median Mortgage Repayment
Change

2006
($/month)
2011
($/month)
($)
(%)

AshburtonWA
252
954
702
278.6
Port HedlandWA
1 083
2 600
1 517
140.1
Victoria-DalyNT
370
834
464
125.4
Derby-West KimberleyWA
900
1 842
942
104.7
BeverleyWA
650
1 300
650
100.0
Blackall TamboQld.
499
953
454
91.0
BoddingtonWA
1 083
2 043
960
88.6
RoebourneWA
1 602
3 000
1 398
87.3
CoolgardieWA
693
1 287
594
85.7
KatanningWA
650
1 207
557
85.7

(a) Applicable to occupied private dwellings which were owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme by a member of the household. Excludes 'Visitor only' and 'Other non-classifiable' households.
(b) LGAs with a total occupied private dwelling count under 500 dwellings are excluded from this table.
Cells in this table have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data.
Source: ABS Census of Population and Housing, 2006 and 2011.


Ashburton, in the Pilbara in Western Australia, is characterised by mining, agriculture and fishing, and tourism. Ashburton experienced the fastest growth in median monthly mortgage repayments, which increased by 278.6% from $252 in 2006 to $954 in 2011. However, the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage was low, at 3.5% in 2011, and had decreased from 10.4% in 2006. Further analysis of Census data shows that between 2006 and 2011:
  • the region experienced above average population growth (64.5%) and high population turnover (including people arriving and departing);
  • the number of occupied private dwellings increased from 1,776 to 1,937 (161 homes or 9.1%);
  • the number of homes owned outright nearly doubled from 84 to 165 (81 homes or 96.4%), as some residents paid off their mortgages; and
  • the number of homes being rented increased from 1,437 to 1,625 (188 homes or 13.1%).

In Western Australia, Derby-West Kimberley, Boddington and Roebourne also experienced high population growth and population turnover during the period. For an analysis of population growth and turnover rates in LGAs across Australia, see Perspectives on Regional Australia: Population Growth and Turnover in Local Government Areas (LGAs), 2006-2011 (cat. no. 1380.0.55.007).


HOMES OWNED WITH A MORTGAGE: STATE AND TERRITORY MAPS BY LGA

Across every State and the Northern Territory, the fastest growth in mortgage repayments were in LGAs outside the capital city areas. While these areas had lower overall mortgage repayments compared to the capital cities, they showed the most significant change over time.

New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory
Victoria
Queensland
South Australia
Western Australia
Tasmania
Northern Territory


CONCLUSION

This article examines the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage and the associated cost of mortgage repayments. Housing costs, which include mortgage repayments, are often the largest regular expense to be met by households and it is important for planners in LGAs to understand the costs of mortgages in their local area.

In 2011, the proportion of dwellings owned with a mortgage was highest in the Australian Capital Territory and Western Australia, 38.9% and 37.8% respectively and lowest in the Northern Territory (30.6%). The LGA in Australia with the highest proportion of homes owned with a mortgage was Serpentine-Jarrahdale, in Western Australia, with 55.3%.

The LGA with the highest median monthly mortgage repayment was Woollahra in New South Wales at $3,250. The fastest growth in mortgage repayments was reported in the LGA of Ashburton, in Western Australia, which increased by 278.6% from $252 in 2006 to $954 in 2011. Across every State and the Northern Territory, the fastest growth in mortgage repayments were in LGAs outside the capital city areas. While these areas had lower overall mortgage repayments compared to the capital cities, they showed the most significant change over time.

The third article in this series explores housing rental rates across Australia, the states and territories, and LGAs and includes an analysis of median weekly rental payments.

DATA SOURCES AND DEFINITIONS

Data in this article were drawn from the Censuses of Population and Housing, conducted in August 2006 and August 2011. For more information see ABS Census Dictionary (cat. no. 2901.0).

The Census provides a snapshot of housing tenure in Australia on Census Night. For more information see Fact Sheet: Housing Tenure in the Census.

Mortgage payments over time, using Census data, have not been adjusted to take into account the changes to the cost of living. For more information see Fact Sheet: Mortgage and Rent Payments.

Income data collected from the Census has some limitations. For more information see Fact Sheet: Income Data in the Census.

Analysis in this article is based on private dwellings which were occupied on Census Night. This analysis excludes households not classifiable by household type (Visitor only and Other non-classifiable households).

This article analyses data for Local Government Areas (LGAs) and excludes Unincorporated areas. The Australia Capital Territory (ACT) is included in state and territory analysis, but not in regional analysis as there are no LGAs in the ACT. This article also categorises LGAs into Greater Capital City Statistical Areas (GCCSAs). While most LGA boundaries fit within a Greater Capital City or Rest of State /Territory boundary, some LGAs intersect GCCSA boundaries. These LGAs have been categorised as either Greater Capital City or Rest of State based on where the majority of their area lies.

The proportion of homes owned with a mortgage is defined as the number of occupied private dwellings, owned with a mortgage or being purchased under a rent/buy scheme by a member of the household, expressed as a proportion of total occupied private dwellings.

The proportion of homes owned outright is defined as the number of occupied private dwellings, owned outright by a member of the household, expressed as a proportion of total occupied private dwellings.

Total occupied private dwellings include dwellings with tenure type 'not stated'. Across Australia, this represents approximately 2.5% of all dwellings. This should be taken into account when interpreting Census output.

An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Household is defined as one where at least one usually resident person present on Census Night was identified as an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person.

The median is the value that divides a set of data exactly in half. It is the middle value when the values in a set of data are arranged in order. If there is no middle value (i.e. there are an even number of values) then the median is calculated by determining the mean of the two middle values. Thus: median = the middle value of a set of data.


ENDNOTES
1. Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2013, Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2011-12, cat. no. 4130.0, ABS, Canberra.
2. Government of South Australia, 2010, The 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide, A volume of the South Australian Planning Strategy, 2010, Adelaide, p73.
3. Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2013, Housing Occupancy and Costs, 2011-12, cat. no. 4130.0, ABS, Canberra.

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