National home values rise at fastest pace in over 30 years

CoreLogic’s national home value index has recorded its fastest rate of appreciation in over 30 years, with capital cities said to have reclaimed the pole position, having been outpaced by regional markets for months.

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National home values expanded by a further 2.8 per cent in March, the fastest rate of appreciation CoreLogic has recorded since 1988.

While Sydney led the pack for capital gains, with values up 3.7 per cent over the month, each of the capital cities saw their values pick up by at least 1.4 per cent.

Hobart was the runner-up with growth of 3.3 per cent in March, followed by Canberra at 2.8 per cent, and Melbourne and Brisbane equal on 2.4 per cent each.

However, according to CoreLogic, Sydney and Melbourne have a lot to celebrate, having repositioned themselves as growth leaders following several months of trailing behind the smaller capitals. 

In fact, Sydney dwelling values are now 2.6 per cent higher than their July 2017 peak, which marks a remarkable recovery considering the 14.9 per cent drop in values through to May 2019 and the further 2.9 per cent fall throughout the COVID downturn.  

Similarly, Melbourne housing values have recovered from the 11.1 per cent fall between 2017 and 2019, and the 5.6 per cent drop in values through the worst of the COVID-related downturn to set a new record high in March.  

Cities outpace regions

Moreover, for the first time in 12 months, growth in capital city housing values outpaced the regional markets, with CoreLogic’s combined capital cities index rising 2.8 per cent in March compared with the 2.5 per cent gain seen across the regions.

“Housing values in regional areas are 11.4 per cent higher over the past year, demonstrating the earlier stronger growth trend; capital city values are now 4.8 per cent higher on an annual basis with the acceleration in growth evident in March,” CoreLogic’s research director, Tim Lawless, said.  

In fact, the only state where the regions continued to excel at a faster pace than the capital city was Victoria. Regional Victoria values were up 2.6 per cent compared with a 2.4 per cent rise across Melbourne.


Looking at the quarterly growth data, Sydney smashed another all-time high, with growth hitting 6.7 per cent over the first quarter of the year – the strongest uplift since June/July 2015.

Across the regional markets, gains were highest in NSW, where values were up 2.8 per cent over the month.

But despite Sydney’s impressive performance, it was Hobart that outpaced the crowd with quarterly growth at 7.6 per cent.

Canberra, too, posted strong growth figures at 6.0 per cent, followed by Darwin at 5.4 per cent and Perth at 5 per cent. The city witnessing the least growth was Adelaide, with a slim 3.2 per cent quarterly change.

Overall, nationally, quarterly growth stood at 5.8 per cent, while yearly growth hit 6.2 per cent.

Over the last 12 COVID-ridden months, it was the regions that broadly outpaced the cities, with growth hitting 11.4 per cent, compared with a combined capitals’ figure of 4.8 per cent.  

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