Roof not falling in on house prices

BIS Shrapnel director Robert Mellor said last week he doesn't believe that house prices will fall over the next 12 months, despite many in the industry saying there will be a collapse. While housing finance figures were down in January, there was an increase in finance for new dwellings. Mellor also said he didn't think that increase rate rises would be a critical issue until the rates reach 8.5 to 9 per cent and that underlying demand for housing will continue to grow. Sydney houses are not significantly overvalued in the long-term sense, he said. He said the investment market is of greater concern and will become critical when investors lose confidence in property.