Is Housing Supply On The Way Down?

October 16th, 2015
The relationship between supply and demand has always had a strong impact on property prices. With building approvals dropping below market expectations and demand for housing on the rise in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia may have already experienced a property peak. While building approvals have risen strongly since 2012 and new construction projects are on the cards for western Sydney, weak August results may signify the end of Australia's residential construction boom.

Building approvals dropped by 6.9 percent in August and 0.7 percent on a trend basis, marking the fifth consecutive month of falling results. While approvals are still 5.1 percent higher for the year, weak results in recent months have missed market expectations. Much of this weakness is due to apartment approvals, which are down 4.7 percent from their peak earlier this year. On a trend basis, building approvals are 2.9 percent below their peak, with some analysts expecting approvals to drop even further over the next few months.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) report, "Dwelling approvals decreased in August in Tasmania (6.8 per cent), Victoria (4.2 per cent), Western A [...]

The Truth About Recycling

October 9th, 2015
Human waste management and disposal is a massive global problem that needs to be constantly addressed. Recycling is often promoted as the ultimate solution, with programs available around the world to help save energy, reduce waste, and re-use important resources. While recycling is essentially good for the environment, it may not be as helpful as you think. The collection, transportation and recycling of waste materials requires a lot of energy, with the practice of recycling also widely criti [...]

Not All Fats Are Made Equal

October 2nd, 2015

Fat has a bad reputation, with people widely associating it with obesity and disease. While the consumption of some fats can lead to problems, other fats are absolutely essential for a balanced diet. It’s important to recognise the differences between fats in order to maximise your dietary intake, with specific fats essential for energy, brain function, vitamin transportation, hormone regulation, […]

Water on Mars – What’s Next?

September 25th, 2015

The recent discovery of liquid water on Mars marks the start of a new relationship with the red planet. Findings from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) have detected signatures of hydrated minerals that come and go with the seasons, with spectrometer observations showing signs of liquid salty water. People are already speculating about the implications of these findings, with microbial […]

Housing Affordability Improves

September 17th, 2015

According to the latest Housing Affordability Report by the Adelaide Bank and Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA), housing affordability has improved during the June quarter. While discrepancies exist between Australian states and first home buyers are still struggling to get into the market, a rise in average family income and a drop in interest rates has helped to improve […]

Building Industry Expands

September 11th, 2015

The Australian building industry has expanded for the first time in ten months, with strong growth seen in residential construction and increasing demand for industrial assets. While a drop in mining-related investment continued to adversely affect the engineering construction sector, growth in apartment building, house building, and commercial construction were more than enough to make up the difference. With big […]

How Toxic Are Your Household Cleaners?

September 4th, 2015

Everyone likes the satisfaction they get from a freshly cleaned kitchen or a sparkling bathroom floor, but sometimes, cleaning the house can do you more harm than good. Toxic substances are common in cleaning products, including ingredients that have been linked to asthma, cancer, reproductive disorders, hormone disruption, and neurotoxicity. While exposure to many of these substances is said to […]

Making Stress Work for You

August 28th, 2015

Stress is an everyday part of life, whether it’s due to financial pressures, long work hours, or interpersonal problems. While most people suffer under stress, letting it annoy them and beat them down, others see it as an exciting opportunity for growth. By learning how to manage and work with your stress, you can be more productive and less anxious […]

People Who Need Less Sleep

August 21st, 2015

Sleep is an essential element of life, with our downtime hours helping us to refresh, energise, and function more effectively during the day. While most of us need seven or eight solid hours of sleep every night just to feel normal, some people manage to get by on much less. Anyone who sleeps for less than five hours a night […]

Will the Aussie Dollar Keep Rising?

May 18th, 2015

After dropping into low US75c territory for the first time in six years, the Aussie dollar has had somewhat of a resurgence in recent weeks. The local currency reached a four-month high of US81.63c in recent days, and is now sitting just above US80c as it decides which way to turn next. Will the dollar continue to rise against the […]

Gardening During the Colder Months

May 18th, 2015

Gardening during winter can be challenging, with many plants – and gardeners – struggling with frosty mornings and cold overnight temperatures. The colder months can be an incredibly productive time, however, with lots of plants still active and plenty of preparation work to do before the warm weather kicks in. From vegetable and herb gardens through to flowering plants and […]