For the first time in 17 months, Sydney’s property prices fell over September, whilst house prices across most major cities crept slightly higher.
Sydney property prices eased 0.1 per cent in September, dragging the annual pace from 13 per cent in August down to 10.5 per cent. The median Sydney home price remains steady at around $910,000. Meanwhile home prices in most other capital cities inched higher in September.
The Sydney slowdown is good news for house hunters who have been frustrated by rampant price escalations and indicates that tighter lending rules across the board are having some effect.
Although the start of spring is traditionally considered a good time to sell a home delivering strong returns, there is currently a softer demand along with an increase of 16 per cent in the number of homes advertised for sale compared to September last year.
“Buyers are now in a good position given the increased listing and less competition,” says State Custodians general manager Joanna Pretty. “This means they can afford to be more choosy and search around for better home loan deals rather than having to jump the gun.”
CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless adds that buyers are now becoming increasingly wary of paying high prices.
The affordability challenges facing Sydney buyers within the detached housing sector are pushing more demand towards the medium to high density sector,” he says.“That push for units over houses resulted in a 0.3 per cent fall in typical house prices over September.
Cheaper units are now also being favoured due to the July introduction of first time buyer stamp duty discounts for dwellings under $800,000. This in turn has led to less demand for detached homes which are typically more than this price.
Meanwhile in other capital cities Melbourne prices jumped 0.9 per cent, an increase of 12.1 per cent on the year. Hobart was another big performer rising a significant 1.7% to an annual increase of 14.3 per cent. Other annual increases to September include Canberra at 7.8 per cent, Adelaide 5 per cent and Brisbane 2.9 per cent.
The Perth market was still struggling with annual home prices in the city dropping 2.9 per cent compared to this time last year, and Darwin which has also had a big fall of 4.7 per cent.
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