"It appears to be one step forward and two steps backward for Perth," said Domain chief economist Andrew Wilson. "There's just not the economic drive there to have a consistent lift in prices."
Yet a handful of suburbs in the south of the Swan River notched house price gains. Canal suburbs Wannanup and Dudley Park topped the list of suburbs with fastest growing prices, together with inner south suburbs like Como and South Perth.
The growth can be attributed to strong first-home buyer numbers and change-over buyers taking advantage of the value in the market.
"Even though they will take a hit on the sale of their property, change-over buyers are able to get into that higher price bracket right now or choose those lifestyle properties," Wilson said.
According to Harcourts Mandurah director Ben Hatch, buyers in Wannanup and Dudley Park were either trading up into the waterfront lifestyle or trading in from higher priced properties in established Perth suburbs. They are making the move now because canal homes are running out.
Still, Rebecca Freeman of LJ Hooker City Residential does not see any real rebound in the south.
"I think we've probably seen it bottom out, but we're not going to see prices move forward much in the next 18 months," she said.
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