Australian house prices have become even more expensive, with coronavirus lockdowns across NSW, Victoria and the ACT having practically no impact on property values.
- Darwin, Canberra and Perth saw the biggest price gains (up more than 22pc in a year)
- Melbourne had the slowest price rise (up 13pc in the past year)
- Regional property (up 22pc) outperformed capital cities (up 18pc)
The nation’s median property price lifted by 1.5 per cent last month (to $666,514), according to the latest CoreLogic data.
Houses and apartments in nearly every capital city were even pricier, with Hobart (+2.3pc), Canberra (+2.2pc) and Brisbane (+2pc) posting the biggest increases.
Prices in the other capitals also went up sharply, including Adelaide (+1.9pc), Sydney (+1.8pc) and Melbourne (+1.2pc). But Darwin was the outlier, with prices down 0.1 per cent last month.
However, this month’s figures from CoreLogic did not include Perth or regional Western Australia “pending the resolution of a divergence from other housing market measures in WA”.
Housing values have risen at a slower pace in the past few months, but that “probably has more to do with worsening affordability constraints than ongoing lockdowns”, said CoreLogic research director Tim Lawless.
Strong demand despite lockdowns
Property prices went up sharply in August despite a sharp fall in the number of properties advertised for sale.
CoreLogic noted that in August, the number of new property listings fell 5.8 per cent below the five-year average.
In contrast, a lot more people wanted to sell their properties before the Delta outbreak plunged much of Australia into various stages of COVID-19 restrictions. New listings were 19.7 per cent higher than average in early May.
“Housing prices have risen almost 11 times faster than wages growth over the past year, creating a more significant barrier to entry for those who don’t yet own a home,” Mr Lawless said.
“Lockdowns are having a clear impact on consumer sentiment, however to date the restrictions have resulted in falling advertised listings and, to a lesser extent, fewer home sales, with less impact on price growth momentum.”
In context, Australian property values have jumped 15.8 per cent since the year began.
They were also 18.4 per cent higher compared with this time, last year — making it the fastest annual rate of
growth in 32 years (since July 1989 to be exact).
“Through the late 1980s, the annual pace of national home value appreciation was as high as 31 per cent, so the market isn’t quite in unprecedented territory,” he added.
“The annual growth rate at the moment is trending higher — in fact, it is 3.6 times higher than the 30-year average rate of annual growth.”
In dollar terms, Australia’s median property price has risen by around $103,400 in the past year (which equates to about $1,990 per week).
In comparison, Australian wages are growing at a much slower pace (about 1.7 per cent annually), underscoring the worsening affordability issues.