City's price growth gobsmacking

By Staff Reporter

New research has found that one Australian capital's prices are growing at an unthinkable pace, with the city’s real estate now more expensive than London’s.

Sydney’s median house price reached $1 million at the end of June, following 22.9 per cent annual growth and 8.4 per cent quarterly growth, according to Domain Group.

The median unit price is now $656,000, after growing 6.6 per cent over the quarter and 13.9 per cent over the year.

Domain senior economist Andrew Wilson said Sydney’s status as a million-dollar city has made it a significant player in the international property market.

Sydney now has a higher median house price than London and is fast approaching New York, although it is still well behind Paris, he added.

Dr Wilson said Sydney house prices are growing at near-record rates – and faster than the boom years of 2001 and 2002.

The new boom has been driven by ultra-low interest rates, a strong local economy, high levels of migration, a chronic undersupply of housing and record investor activity, Dr Wilson said.

“Confidence and momentum will continue to sustain the Sydney market through the remainder of 2015, although growth rates are unlikely to match the record-breaking June quarter performance,” he said.

Meanwhile, Domain’s statistics for the rest of Australia have found that the Melbourne market remains strong, while Darwin appears to have emerged from its slump.

Melbourne’s median house price grew 10.3 per cent over the year to reach $668,000, while the city’s median unit price grew 4.5 per cent to $444,000.

Darwin house prices increased 1.8 per cent to $654,000, while unit prices increased 3.3 per cent to $472,000.

Adelaide was the only other market that recorded growth in both sectors, with houses up 3.3 per cent to $479,000 and units up 0.6 per cent to $292,000.

Canberra veered between the two extremes, with house prices surging 5.4 per cent to $616,000 but unit prices slumping 6.8 per cent to $382,000.

Brisbane was more even, with house prices climbing 1.9 per cent to $491,000 and unit prices declining 3.2 per cent to $372,000.

There was minimal movement in Hobart, where houses rose 0.6 per cent to $326,000 and units slipped 1.6 per cent to $273,000.

Perth experienced declines in both sectors, with houses down 1.4 per cent to $605,000 and units down 2.1 per cent to $405,000.

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