When the title and article don’t meet

Today in the Herald I saw a title “housing fall on the way”.  I expected that this would lead me to a report where someone was discussing why they thought the property market would weaken – an argument I would have been interested in reading.

Instead I noticed they were discussing this article by Westpac.  In the article Westpac says that low construction and interest rates will see house price growth move into double-digits by the middle of 2010.  This isn’t a house price fall.

In fact, the Herald article doesn’t really paint a picture of weakness – outside of a comment that a change in the tax treatment in property would influence house prices.  So where the hell did that title come from.

Let this be a lesson to all of us.  Don’t judge an article based on its title, as the person writing the title is often completely different than the person writing the article.  And obviously sometimes they write the title without actually reading the article 😉

  • Miguel Sanchez

    I imagine the headline comes from this quote:
    “House price inflation is heading double-digit in the near-term, but we foresee a downturn in late-2010.”

    And this one:
    “In 2010 we expect interest rates to rise, net migration to slow, and a strong increase in house building. This will negate the market’s short-term strength and cause a downturn, possibly involving another brief period of house price decline, or a longer period of house price stagnation.”

    And this one:
    “But eventually, house prices will be high enough to incentivise a pickup in construction activity. And eventually, short-term interest rates will rise. When one or both finally come to pass, the market will turn and house prices could fall again. And changes to the tax regime could be seriously negative for house prices.”

    What was that about actually reading the article? 😉

  • @Miguel Sanchez

    A stablisation or slight fall off a high base (which is where the double digit house price growth takes us) is not the same as a housing fall in my opinion 😉

    I realise that Westpac left there options open, but I still think saying a fall is on the way is taking a bit too much out of it 😛