‘A seller’s market’: House values hit record high after strong January

House values have climbed to their highest level on record with every capital city in the country experiencing an increase through the first month of the year.

CoreLogic on Monday reported that house values lifted by 0.9 per cent through January, eclipsing its previous high recorded in September 2017. The index is now 1 per cent higher than its pre-coronavirus level.

The biggest increases in values were recorded in Darwin (up by 2.3 per cent), Hobart and Perth (up by both 1.6 per cent).

House values reached a record high through January despite a low supply of homes for sale.

Dwelling values across Sydney increased by 0.4 per cent, driven by a 0.7 per cent increase in house values. Unit values actually edged down by 0.1 per cent.

Over the past year, house values in Sydney are up by 3.1 per cent while units are down by 0.6 per cent.

In Melbourne, house values lifted by 0.6 per cent while unit values were up by 0.1 per cent. Over the past 12 months, house values in Melbourne are still down by 2.8 per cent while units are down by 0.6 per cent.

CoreLogic research director Tim Lawless said housing values were lifting alongside low advertised supply.

The total number of advertised properties is around record lows. Listing numbers are almost 28 per cent down on January last year.

“With housing activity continuing to rise at above average levels while listing numbers remain well below average, the natural consequences is upwards pressure on housing prices,” he said.

“Advertised supply levels are low while demand is strong. This is a seller’s market, but for some reason we are still seeing below normal vendor numbers across most markets. With sentiment rising and selling conditions favouring the vendor, it is reasonable to expect new listing numbers will rise as the year progresses which may help to temper housing market conditions.”

Regional areas continue to out perform the capital cities.

Values across regional NSW lifted by 1.5 per cent in January to be 4.7 per cent better over the past quarter. Sydney values over the same quarter rose by 1.6 per cent.

Values in regional Victoria increased by 1.6 per cent in January to be 4.8 per cent up over the quarter compared to Melbourne’s 2.1 per cent improvement.

Mr Lawless said it appeared people were moving out of Sydney and Melbourne and heading for regional areas.

“Better housing affordability, an opportunity for a lifestyle upgrade and lower density housing options are other factors that might be contributing to this trend, along with the new found popularity of remote working arrangements,” he said.

The Reserve Bank board meets on Tuesday with it expected to hold official interest rates at their current record low level of 0.1 per cent.

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