New data shows the Australian housing market has seen its strongest growth since the financial crisis took hold.
The figures from Australian Property Monitors show house prices rose more than 3.3 per cent on average across the country in the June quarter.
That is the strongest quarterly growth in prices since December 2007.
Sydney and Melbourne had the strongest growth during that time, but Darwin has seen the greatest price rises over the course of the year.
Growth in Brisbane’s housing market has been more sluggish than average and Perth has bucked the trend entirely, recording a slight drop in house prices.
Property Monitors economist Matthew Bell says low interest rates and the first home owners grant have kept the affordable end of the market buoyant, but now the top end is showing signs of recovery.
“We’ve had that top end of the market, those more expensive properties, come back in a big way,” he said.
“Particularly for Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane; they grew by nearly double the amount of the more affordable areas.
“I think it’s really the economy coming back, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne, where those finance sectors, those jobs are coming back, people are getting more security for their income, they’re more likely to get back into the market and make those top end purchases.”
Mr Bell says he does not think the figures show a property market bubble.
“As the first home owner boost phases out in September and December, some of that demand will diminish, but I think it will really be taken up by investors in that time and into 2010,” he said.
“So there’s a really good pipeline of demand for properties across the board in most capital cities.”
By RADIO AUSTRALIA 30 July 2009