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Bargain properties increasingly rare

The number of properties priced under $400,000 has plunged in the last 15 years, with less than a quarter of homes falling into this range in most capital cities.

In 1999, over 90 per cent of properties sold for less than $400,000 in all cities except Sydney, where 79.1 per cent of properties made the cut.

Today, the percentage of properties under this benchmark has fallen to less a quarter in five capitals – 7.5 per cent in Canberra, 13.5 per cent in Sydney, 16.4 per cent in PerthPerth, TAS Perth, WA, 19.2 per cent in Darwin and 25.4 per cent in Melbourne.

Brisbane and Adelaide came in at 33 per cent and 48.7 per cent respectively while in Hobart, 63.2 per cent of properties were still below the $400,000 mark.

On the other hand, regional areas were significantly more affordable, with 63.9 per cent of sales falling into the cheapest category.

Historical data shows a dramatic rise in capital city values came between 1999 and 2004, except for Hobart and Darwin which stayed largely unchanged.

During this period, the greatest fall was recorded in Sydney where the affordable category declined from 79.1 per cent to 34.4 per cent.

From 2004 to 2009, Sydney’s cheapest properties actually increased marginally but all other cities recorded another plunge.

Since 2009, the category has shrunk again as prices rise across the city markets.

Bargain properties increasingly rare
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