Property fell in all capitals in Q1: ABS

Michael Mehr
(Australian Associated Press)


Home prices fell in every Australian capital city in the three months to March, slicing off more than $170 billion from the total value of the country’s dwellings.

Average prices across the eight capitals dropped 3.0 per cent in the quarter and 7.4 per cent in the year, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Residential Property Price Index, released on Tuesday.

The March quarter drops were greatest in Sydney and Melbourne as home prices fell 3.9 per cent and 3.8 per cent, respectively, while the smallest dip was in Adelaide at 0.2 per cent.

The total value of Australia’s 10.3 million residential dwellings fell $172.7 billion between January and the end of March, to $6.56 trillion, a heftier decline than the $133 billion lost in the December quarter.

The statistics agency said 42,900 homes were added during the first three months of 2019.

“A continuation of tight credit supply and reduced demand from investors and owner occupiers has contributed to weakness in property prices in all capital cities this quarter,” ABS chief economist Bruce Hockman said.

Average property values on a 12-month basis fell 10.3 per cent in Sydney, 9.4 per cent in Melbourne, 4.2 per cent in Darwin, 2.7 per cent in Perth and 1.3 per cent in Brisbane.

Home prices over the year were up 0.8 per cent in Adelaide and 4.6 per cent in Hobart, while values in Canberra remained unchanged.

According to the figures, the total value of Australian residential dwellings peaked at $6.96 trillion in the March quarter of 2018 and has since fallen for four consecutive quarters.

The ABS calculated that the average Australian home cost $636,900 by the end of March 2019, with NSW having the most expensive mean at $806,800 and Tasmania recording the lowest at $412,700.


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