Interest rates influence property prices, but they are not the reason that Australia has some of the highest housing values in the world, Philip Lowe said in a speech just before standing down as Reserve Bank governor.
Mr Lowe said it's true that the lower interest rates that Australia has experienced for much of the past 30 years have contributed to the increase in property prices.
"But the reason that Australia has some of the highest housing prices in the world isn’t interest rates, which have been at roughly similar levels across most advanced economies. Rather, it is the outcome of the choices we have made as a society: choices about where we live; how we design our cities, and zone and regulate urban land; how we invest in and design transport systems; and how we tax land and housing investment," he said.
"In each of these areas, our society and politicians have made choices that lead to high urban land and housing costs. It is by tackling these issues that we can address the high cost of housing in Australia, which I view as a serious economic and social problem."
Rachael Bland – Founder & CEO