New research by CoreLogic shows Australia’s capital city housing market has been “extremely interest rate-sensitive” since the GFC.
According to the data, dwelling values grew by 54.9 per cent for the combined capitals between December 2008 and June 2016.
Sydney led the way with a massive 87.9 per cent increase in home values during the post-GFC period, followed closely by Melbourne (71.8 per cent).
Canberra was next best for dwelling value growth with 26.9 per cent, followed by Darwin (20.9 per cent), Adelaide (14.8 per cent), Brisbane (14.6 per cent), Perth (9.0 per cent) and Hobart (6.4 per cent).
However, CoreLogic research director Tim Lawless noted that from December 2008 to October 2010, dwelling value growth across the combined capitals slowed to 21.8 per cent.
“Official interest rates were first increased coming out of the financial crisis in October 2009, rising by 175 basis points to November 2010,” he said.
“The boost to the first home buyers grant was partially removed in September 2009 and completely removed after December 31, 2010.
“Combined, these factors saw the rate of value growth slow, followed by a decline in dwelling values.”
Mr Lawless said that between October 2008 and May 2012, when official interest rates were at 4.75 per cent and stimulus was removed from the housing market, combined capital city home values fell by 7.4 per cent.
Furthermore, dwelling values for the combined capitals increased by 37.3 per cent from May 2012 to June 2016, during which time the cash rate fell by 200 basis points to 1.75 per cent.
“The data indicates that since the financial crisis, the capital city housing market could best be described as being extremely interest rate-sensitive,” Mr Lawless said.
“A deeper dive into the data shows that in reality, only Sydney and Melbourne have responded to the stimulus of low interest rates. The relative strength of the Sydney and Melbourne economies and the much greater employment growth have clearly driven housing values higher in these cities.”
Mr Lawless said that until economies outside of these two capitals improve, it is unlikely that an era of sustainable home value growth will return to these areas, despite extremely low interest rates.
“While affording to purchase a home in Sydney and Melbourne is becoming a stretch for many, existing home owners in these cities have experienced substantial equity increases,” he added.