The median house price in Australia climbed to $481,310 in the September quarter - the highest level since the December 2007 quarter according to a report compiled by the Real Estate Institute of Australia and Mortgage Choice.

Darwin has recorded the highest median house price at $607,200 while Sydney prices rose to $569,000 according to the Real Estate Market Facts report. Hobart remained the cheapest place to buy a home with median price currently sits at $347,500 - the lowest of all capital cities.

The Australian weighted average median price for other dwellings also increased by 3.5% to $387,572 - a massive 9.2% jump in value from the same quarter a year ago.

"The median house prices highlighted the resilience of the property market, continuing to climb over the September quarter," said David Airey, president of REIA. "This is the third consecutive quarter that has recorded increases in median prices across Australian capital cities."

Median rents for three bedroom dwellings rose across most capital cities. Darwin remains the most expensive capital city in which to rent a three bedroom home at $570 a week, while a two bedroom other dwelling fetches $425 in rent.

Over the September quarter, Brisbane, Perth and Darwin recorded an increase in vacancy rates. Perth recorded a 1.3% rise to 4.8%, Darwin by 0.9% to 1.7%, while Brisbane vacancy rates climbed by 0.3% to 3.3%.

According to REIA, an industry benchmark vacancy rate is considered to be a value of 3%. Vacancy rates lower than 3% indicate strong demand for rental accommodation, while rates higher than 3% are generally considered to reflect an oversupply of rental accommodation.

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