Regional centres in Western Australia have reported strong gains in sale prices over the September quarter, according to the latest report from the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA).

Eight of the state's nine regional centres posted an increase in median sale price during the three months to September, with Karratha hitting the biggest increase at 8.1% to $465,000.

"Karratha also saw a 61% increase in sales activity. The significant increase we are seeing in some of the mining regional centres is partly due to the commitments mining companies have made to keep workers in Western Australia since COVID-19 restrictions were introduced," said Damian Collins, president of REIWA.

Geraldton followed Karratha in terms of growth in median sales price for the quarter, hitting 3.4% to $275,000. Kalgoorlie Boulder, and Port Hedland also registered respective gains of 3.3% to $285,000 and 2.2% to $230,000.

Most regional centres were also able to clock higher sales activity during the quarter. Broome recorded the highest gains at 63%, followed by Geraldton (50%), Esperance (39%), Busselton (13%), and Bunbury (2%).

The increase in median sale prices in these regional centres came with the drop in rental listings during the quarter. In fact, two regional centres — Busselton and Esperance — reported less than 15 rental properties by the end of the September quarter.

"With the changing WA economy and the population growth we are seeing, we will see continued upward pressure on sales and rental values in our regional centres in the coming months," Collins said.