Australian house prices drop

Research has found that the government's funding boost for first home buyers did little to arrest an eight per cent fall in residential property value during 2008.

Australian Property Monitors (APM) has stated that Residential property values fell nationwide on average almost 8 per cent last year and is expected to slide modestly in the first half of 2009.

APM'S senior economist Liam O'Hara said that while the first homebuyer's share of the mortgage market increased in November 2008 figures have shown that the government's first homebuyers boost scheme has done little, thus far, to stem falling property prices.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut interest rates substantially in the last few months of 2008 to help revive the faltering economy.

Australian Property Monitors (APM) also stated that nationally house and unit prices had declined for the second consecutive quarter of the last three months for 2008, and that houses retained their value better than units.


During the December quarter residential property values showed that Perth's property bubble had burst and moved to Darwin where unit prices surged by 20.5 per cent during 2008, with house prices jumping 5.5 per cent.


The APM also noted a 1.9 per cent easing in Perth house and unit prices during the December quarter making it a bleak year for the capital city's property market, where house prices plummeted 7.9 per cent and unit prices fell 4.7 per cent.


Canberra house and unit prices fell 3.8 per cent and 1.8 per cent respectively during the December quarter, leading to a 6.7 per cent and 2.6 per cent decline respectively in prices during the year.


Sydney's market also felt the pinch. This was despite a more modest 0.7 per cent easing in house prices during December, with unit prices holding steady. Over the year, house and unit prices in Australia's largest city dropped 4.2 per cent and 3.8 per cent respectively.


Melbourne's market presented a more modest and mixed picture, with house prices firming 0.9 per cent during December and unit prices easing 0.1 per cent. Throughout the year, the Victorian capital saw house prices rise by 0.9 per cent and unit prices decline by 1.5 per cent.


Brisbane experienced a mixed December quarter, with house prices rising 3.3 per cent and units backtracking 3.5 per cent. Unit prices during 2008 dropped 6.5 per cent and house prices firmed 0.4 per cent.


December unit values in Hobart fell 4.4 per cent, leading to a 7.1 per cent plunge over the year. House prices fared better, holding steady in December but easing 0.4 per cent over the year.


Adelaide's housing market was flat in December but unit prices increased by 2.1 per cent. The market held onto its gains throughout 2008 with house and unit prices rising 2.9 per cent and 2.7 per cent respectively.

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Published on February 2-nd, 2009 in Property Investment
Damon Rasheed is the CEO of Rate Detective, an Australian financial service comparison sites specialising in Life Insurance, Income Protection Insurance and home loans. Damon holds a Master's Degree in Economics from the University of Melbourne and has been involved in many start-up internet businesses.
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