Australia saw a drop in the median house price of its capital cities during the first three months this year amid the market’s downturn, according to the latest figures from the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA). Weighted average fell by 0.1% at $770,086 for houses.
However, the drop was not felt across the board: Prices increased in Hobart, Melbourne, and Adelaide but dropped in Darwin, Perth, Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra. The ACT capital had the largest fall in house prices and Darwin had the largest decrease in other dwellings.
“This is the first time since September 2006 that Hobart hasn’t had the lowest house median price for all capital cities on the back of an increase of 7.2 per cent over the quarter and 20.0 per cent over the previous year,” said REIA president Malcolm Gunning.
Despite the tumultuous quarter, the figure is still 2.2% higher than the same period in 2017. Gunning attributed this to the rises in all capital cities except Perth and Darwin.
Meanwhile, median rents for three-bedroom houses increased in the first quarter in all capital cities save Darwin, and median rents for two-bedroom other dwellings performed better across the board, with all cities increasing their medians.
Gunning said the weighted average vacancy rate for the eight capital cities decreased to 2.6 per cent during the March quarter indicating a tighter rental market. “Canberra has the tightest market with a vacancy rate of 0.5 per cent which is the lowest rate for a capital city since March 2008 and for Canberra since the early 1980s.”
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