Strong population growth in NSW, but good planning needed

New South Wales' population is booming, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

In the year to December 31 2013, the state's population soared by 110,000 people. As this figure creeps higher in months and years to come, demand will remain steady for housing.

Existing homeowners may find that's there is little struggle in selling their homes in order to upgrade, in which case a mortgage refinance could come in handy. If housing stock doesn't keep the pace with population change, house price growth in population-dense areas - such as Sydney - may remain steady or climb.

"This is New South Wales' highest annual population increase since June 2009 and the highest growth rate since September 2009 when Australia experienced record growth from net overseas migration," explained ABS acting Director of Demography Phil Browning in a June 19 statement.

The main contributor to the rise in the state's population was net overseas migration. Over 71,000 people boosted population figures within this sector, marking the largest increase since September 2009.

Urban Taskforce Chief Executive Chris Johnson commented on the figures, with emphasis on the importance of a solid planning system.

"With record growth occurring to the population in NSW we need to ensure that our planning system is supporting the increasing numbers coming to the state," Mr Johnson explained in a June 19 statement.

He elaborated, noting that recent state budget initiatives pave the way for more people being able to settle in the state. However, he pointed out that there are still areas for improvement.

"A special focus on clustering new high density housing around transport nodes including railway stations and light rail routes will be needed. The proposed Greater Sydney Commission will need to champion growth in appropriate inner city locations," Mr Johnson noted.

Homeowners in the Greater Sydney area and elsewhere in NSW may have good financial leverage, while cheap home loans make borrowing in order to upgrade a very real possibility.

Image credit: lusi

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