Homes in Canada and New Zealand the most overpriced, survey finds

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 14 January, 2015, 6:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 14 January, 2015, 6:00am

Canada, Australia and New Zealand are in the top ranks of the developed world's most overpriced housing markets, according to Deutsche Bank.

Homes in Canada were the most expensive, being 63 per cent overvalued, the bank said in a survey ranking Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries' markets.

The measure reaches 56 per cent in New Zealand, the second-priciest, 53 per cent in Belgium and 49 per cent in Australia.

In Wollongong, a seaside city in the Australian state of New South Wales, homes were more expensive than in New York when the median house price was compared to the median household income, economists wrote in the report.

The survey compares home values to their historic multiples of rent and household income.

Central bankers have been using financial policy to reduce the risk of house-price bubbles in markets including Britain, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Restrictive policies reduced credit growth and price gains by 1 per cent annually, Goldman Sachs Group economist Hui Shan estimated last year.

Warnings by Canadian policymakers about overvalued homes are starting to sink in, with households the least optimistic since May 2013 about further price growth.

In Australia, home prices have climbed 19 per cent over the past two years, driven by a cash rate that has remained at a record low since August 2013, contributing to record-high debt levels.

Home values in the US were about 5 per cent below their historical average based on the measurement, the Deutsche Bank report said. In Britain, where the government has encouraged low down payments on mortgages, they are 38 per cent overvalued.

Values in Canada are 35 per cent above the historical average relative to incomes and 91 per cent higher when compared with rents. Prices in Belgium are 51 per cent higher than the average relative to income, and in Australia 60 per cent above the average relative to rents.