The overall number of properties listed for sale increased in April but fewer homeowners are putting their dwellings for sale, according to the latest report from SQM Research.

The total residential property listings rose by 2.4% to 262,617 in April. However, listing levels were still 10.3% lower than during the same month last year.

Canberra, Perth, and Sydney registered the biggest monthly increases. Only Hobart posted a decline in property listings over the month at 4.8%.

On an annual basis, listings grew in Sydney, Perth, and Melbourne. The Victorian capital clocked the most substantial annual gain in property listings at 18.9%.

New listings, however, declined over the month, down by 2.8% to 81,643 properties. Still, this level was still 57.5% higher than last year.

Hobart recorded the most significant decline in new listings at 16%, while Canberra and Sydney reported the healthiest gains at 10.7% and 4.8%, respectively.

"We have seen a strong rise in Sydney’s new property listings for the month, in part driven by having five weekends, but also because property owners are keen to take advantage of the buoyant conditions," said Louis Christopher, managing director of SQM Research.

Christopher said the decline in old listings suggests that sales rates were still quite strong despite the lift in prices.

In fact, national asking prices increased by 2.6% for houses and 0.2% for units. Capital cities reported a 5.6% growth in asking price for houses and a 1.8% decline in units.

"We expect to see moderate to strong activity in the housing market over this quarter, which will likely push house prices even higher. We are, however, seeing ongoing oversupply of units in Sydney and Melbourne with falls in asking unit prices over the month, leaving some space open for first home buyers and investors to enter the property market," Christopher said.