Household and personal wealth statistics will look increasingly dismal if Australian consumers do not take matters into their own hands, says Countplus chairman and fintech investor Barry Lambert.
In an article penned for InvestorDaily sister title Mortgage Business, Mr Lambert reflected on recently released data from the University of Melbourne suggesting significant decline in the number of “home owners”, with this demographic falling from 57 per cent in 2002 to 51.7 per cent in 2014.
The chairman of financial services company Countplus and decades-long CBA staffer specifically took issue with the dearth of young Australians gaining a foothold on the property ladder.
“Home ownership for those aged between 25-34 declined from 38.7 per cent to 29.2 per cent in 2014. For people aged between 35-44, the rate of home ownership dropped from 63.2 per cent to 53.4 per cent, according to the Melbourne Institute’s Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey,” Mr Lambert explained.
In order to turn this trend around, Australians need to “take the power back” by demonstrating greater understanding of interest rates and gain competitive advantage, Mr Lambert suggested.
“There must be a better understanding of interest rates,” he wrote.
“When I first joined the Commonwealth Bank as a banker and later a financial adviser and businessman, I used to calculate the bank interest rate manually. So, if there is one thing that I truly understand it’s the financial impact of interest rates. Today, unfortunately, very few consumers fully comprehend this.”
Mr Lambert, an investor in start-ups such as Loan Dolphin, also indicated that investors can seek cost-efficiencies by embracing innovative fintech solutions in the lending and investment sectors.
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