Has the housing market entered a "boom" phase?

By Gerv Tacadena

Australia's housing market has reached its highest monthly price growth since 2003, hitting 2.1% in February, according to the latest report from CoreLogic.

The median price of dwellings in Australia hit $598,884 in February, growing at the fastest monthly rate since August 2003. On an annual basis, the median dwelling price grew by 4%.

Tim Lawless, research director at CoreLogic, said Australia's housing market is "in the midst of a broad-based boom.". He said a phase like this has not been seen in the country for more than a decade.

“The last time we saw a sustained period where every capital city and rest of state region was rising in value was mid-2009 through to early 2010, as post-GFC stimulus fuelled buyer demand," he said.

Sydney and Hobart led the monthly gains as both markets registered a 2.5% growth in median dwelling prices. Homes in Melbourne also recorded an increase in median dwelling value at 2.1%.

Lawless said it is unclear whether Sydney and Melbourne's growth can be sustained, as both cities are still recording values below their earlier peaks.

"However, at this current rate of appreciation it won’t be long before Australia’s two most expensive capital city markets are moving through new record highs.  With household incomes expected to remain subdued and stimulus winding down, it is likely affordability will once again become a challenge in these cities." he said.

In quarterly terms, smaller cities posted the highest gains, with Darwin recording the strongest growth at 5.5%.

During the month, regional markets continued to outperform capital cities. However, the gap has narrowed compared with the earlier phase of the growth cycle.

The table from CoreLogic below shows the performance of capital city markets over the month:

House prices remained on an uptrend in February, striking their fastest growth in 17 years.

More Mortgage News