News: Prices 'rocketing' down-under

Tue, 04 Sep 07

Property prices have surged in Oz this year, growing by nearly 7 per cent during the first six months of 2007, led by strong gains in Adelaide, Brisbane and Melbourne, reports the Sydney Herald...

The latest RP Data-Rismark Hedonic Index results show that the Australian residential property market has experienced strong growth this year, with overall property prices growing by an impressive 6.6 per cent.

The growth in property prices during the first half of 2007 is made up of a 6 per cent rise in the price of houses and an 8.5 per cent increase in the price of units.

These rates of growth are significantly higher than the historical averages registered for the   Australian market over the last 25 years, RP Data said today.

"The median house price in Australia is now $459,402 while the median unit price is $365,322," said RP Data CEO, Graham Mirabito.

But the strong rise is "pushing the great Australian dream beyond the grasp of a growing number of families," he said.

“The fact is that home ownership remains incredibly important to many Australian households and the evidence indicates that despite the recent interest rate rises, families are still willing to commit a growing share of their income to purchasing new properties and servicing debt” Mr Mirabito said.

Property up across Australia

In the first half of 2007, house prices jumped in Adelaide (up 11.6 per cent), Brisbane (10.6 per cent), Melbourne (7.9 per cent), and Darwin (9.0 per cent).

Sydney houses have also experienced their strongest growth in years, with a 3.4 per cent increase during the six months to 30 June 2007.

But the Perth housing market has slowed dramatically, with growth of just 1.5 per cent.

Sydney and Perth remain Australia's two most expensive markets, with median house prices of $559,770 and $505,115, respectively.

They are followed by the comparatively less expensive cities of Brisbane ($411,491), Melbourne ($402,817) and Adelaide ($359.504).

Unit values jump

The value of units has experienced even stronger growth than houses with a spectacular 8.5 per cent rise
during the first half of 2007.

The growth in unit prices has been propelled by substantial increases in the major capital cities during the year-to-date, including Adelaide (21.9 per cent), Brisbane (15.7 per cent), Melbourne (10.2 per cent), Darwin (14.2 per cent), Perth (8.6 per cent) and Sydney (4.7 per cent).

Perth is far and away the most costly unit market, with a median unit value of $460,549, followed by Sydney ($407,181), Melbourne ($322,470), Brisbane ($301,264) Adelaide ($280,908) and Darwin ($278,538).

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