Harry Triguboff becomes nation’s largest landlord


Last week, billionaire Meriton founder Harry Triguboff warned that he would develop fewer apartments going forward because selling them would be difficult amid high interest rates.

“It is harder to sell apartments now than ever before”, Triguboff claimed.

“The market for selling is definitely not rising…and it won’t rise much until we drop our interest rates”.

“Of course, I will not be starting so many flats again”, he said.

Triguboff also lamented that there are fewer buyers coming from China and he demanded more migrants “from everywhere”:


“Our people (buyers) do financially worse than before because things in China are nowhere as good as before”, he said.

“The migrants we bring must be from everywhere”.

“Even though the Chinese are very good. Many countries have residents who would be only too happy to come”.

“Many people suffer overseas and they are often very well educated and used to hard work. We must have both of these”, Triguboff said.

According to Robert Gottliebsen, Harry Triguboff’s mouthpiece at The Australian, Chinese people have been the main buyers of Australian apartments for some years.


However, problems in China are now forcing many to sell their apartments, often at a loss.

As a result, Meriton’s new apartment projects in Sydney will compete for buyers with completed projects and older apartments being sold by Chinese investors.

This has prompted Meriton to withhold apartments from sale, with the developer instead retaining two-thirds of its new apartments for rent.


“Many Australians wanting to buy apartments simply can’t raise the money, given the restrictions on bank lending and the high interest rates. And the new apartments are competing with older apartments being sold by the Chinese”, Gottliebsen writes.

“Triguboff has always held some apartments back for rent, but is now only putting one third of his new apartments on the open market, with the rest being retained by Meriton and rented. Meriton is set to have an enormous stock of rental properties”.

Robert Gottliebsen adds that Harry Triguboff “really wants… lower interest rates, which will make it easier for people to buy his apartments and lessen the cost of holding apartments for rent”.

Gottliebsen also laments that “by deliberately making home purchasing too costly for those in their 20s and 30s, we are in the process of converting our major cities to European-style rental communities with enormous long-term ramifications for politics and community well-being”.


“Many of those who rent will have no secure retirement”, Gottliebsen says.

If Robert Gottliebsen is so concerned for the welfare of young home buyers, then why does he support mass immigration?

Net overseas migration

Extreme levels of immigration have forced up rents, making it more expensive for young people to save up a deposit. It has also helped to push-up inflation and interest rates.

Housing supply & rents

Perpetual high immigration will also turn Sydney into a high-rise city, to the detriment of residents, but to the advantage of Meriton:

Sydney dwelling composition

Accordingly, Harry Triguboff continues to demand more migrants to fill his high-rise shoe boxes at the same time as he plans to cut supply and become the nation’s largest landlord.

The greed on display is palpable.

About the author
Leith van Onselen is Chief Economist at the MB Fund and MB Super. He is also a co-founder of MacroBusiness. Leith has previously worked at the Australian Treasury, Victorian Treasury and Goldman Sachs.