Home-owning makes us rich

Australians recorded their best year of wealth creation in 2002 since the 1980s with booming house prices driving up net private wealth by 12.6 per cent, the latest Economic Round-up shows. Real private wealth was up by 10 per cent after allowing for inflation and population growth.

Total market value of the nation's private sector has reached $3.9 trillion which translates into $198,500 per capita. Over the past 10 years, net household wealth has grown at the rate of 2.4 per cent per annum – nearly three times as fast as the average for the world's wealthiest seven nations. In comparison with other OECD countries, most of Australians' wealth resides in housing: two-thirds, compared with one-third in the US.