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‘It’s always hard to buy your first home’: Scott Morrison

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has acknowledged that it is “terribly hard” for people to own their own home, as house prices continue to hit new records.

During an address to the National Press Club this week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison noted that it was increasingly difficult to purchase a home given escalating house prices.

Indeed, the latest figures from CoreLogic showed house prices continued to soar in January 2022 – marking the highest annual increase since June 1989 of 22.4 per cent. 

While Mr Morrison flagged that the government had put in place a range of measures to support home ownership, he conceded that it was "even harder" nowadays.

Over 300,000 Australians have been directly assisted into home ownership during the past three years through Government programmes like Homebuilder and the Home Guarantee Scheme,” Mr Morrison said.

He later said: “On average, Australians are also now 47 months ahead on their mortgage repayments, compared to 30 months in September 2019, with an estimated $245 billion in additional savings on household balance sheets since the pandemic began.

“Australians have been very wise with their money during this pandemic, very wise.

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He said that "the great Australian aspirations" continue to include "liv[ing] the life [Australians] choose for themselves and make their own way", as well as "to own their own home, raise and educate their kids the way they want to do it, to be able to save for their retirement, not get into too much debt and take that occasional family holiday".

But when asked by journalists how he would combat the growing housing affordability issues, Mr Morrison said home ownership has always been a challenge.

 

"On home ownership, it's always hard to buy your first home. It's terribly hard and particularly in the city, in Sydney. I remember it. Jen and I remember it ourselves.

"It's hard and it's still hard and - I'd argue - even harder. And that's why at the last election we came up with, I think, some very effective programmes.

"We can't manage what happens to house prices, but we can help people get into homes. And our Government has helped 300,000 Australians to get into homes," he said.

The Prime Minister suggested that government would keep pursuing policies to ensure Australians could purchase property.

“There’ll be more to help people get that first start in their home – to ensure that Australians can continue to get a go,” Mr Morrison said. 

“Together with the government, [Australians] are going to continue to exercise responsible judgment about our finances, invest in the things that help grow our economy.

“If you lose control of the financial and economic management levers, then Australia’s worst fears on the economy would be realised.”

 

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