During the June 2015 quarter Sydney's house prices experienced their fastest annual growth yet, according to a recent report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). 

Further, the data suggests a trend of improving affordability in smaller cities, meaning they should become more attractive for first home buyers in 2016.

Meanwhile, the residential property price index for the weighted average of Australia’s eight capital cities rose by 4.7% between the March to June 2015 quarters, and up to 9.8% compared to last year.

Sydney’s price increase by 18.9% from last year was one of the fastest recorded rates by the ABS for the current series. Quarterly growth clocked in at 8.9%, another record rate since the current data series began in March 2002.

The rise in prices for established homes was broad based, with a staggering 21.5% increase to the established House Price Index.

From the year up until June 30, five other cities also saw an increase in their house prices. These cities include Melbourne at 7.8%, Brisbane at 2.9%, Canberra at 2.8%, Adelaide at 2.7%, and Hobart at 1.5%. Darwin and Perth, however, were exceptions with their price decreases at -1.8% and -1.2%, respectively.

Over the quarter, Sydney’s prices increased the most. Melbourne (4.2%), Brisbane (0.9%), and Canberra (0.8%) also followed suit. Darwin (-0.8%) and Perth (-0.9%) were the only cities whose prices reduced.

“While Sydney remains the nation’s most expensive capital city, this data highlights that the boom in some property markets is coming to an end, with annual house price growth slowing in Hobart and Adelaide and prices down in Perth and Darwin,” says act.’s Alex Scriven.

Scriven also says that with interest rates and unemploment rates generally low, there should be more first home buyers in coming months.