Despite a seasonal slowdown over the January period, Australia's residential market still managed to rack up healthy gains according to the latest RP Data-Rismark Hedonic Home Value Index.

Over the year, Australia's dwelling values rose 11.8%. During the January quarter, dwelling values rose by 2.4% with Darwin continuing to outperform the rest of the country. Home values in Darwin surged by 4.6% to $475,000 while Melbourne and Canberra both notched up 4.3% gains over the same period. The weakest performing capital city was Perth, with values slipping by 0.6% to $472,500.

Darwin also recorded the highest gross rental yield of 5.7% for houses and 5.9% for units. In contrast, Melbourne achieved the lowest gross rental yields of 3.8% for houses and Perth with a gross rental yield of 4.2% for units.

According to rpdata.com's National Research Director Tim Lawless, a number of positive market indicators during January suggest that the residential market has started the year with some confidence. "Week-on-week, we are seeing an increase in the number of new property advertisements coming to the market. While new stock has been increasing rapidly, the total number of properties available for sale has been falling which is an indicator that buyers are for the time being outweighing sellers and new supply is being quickly consumed."

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