Australian home prices are still falling in early 2019

Groundhog Day/ IMDb
  • Australian capital city home prices fell at the fastest pace since 1983 in December.
  • Based on recent transactions, prices are still falling in early January, albeit at a slightly slower pace.
  • Market activity is extremely limited at this time of the year, meaning a clean read on price trends probably won’t be seen for several weeks yet.

The New Year hasn’t brought much cheer to those hoping for a stabilisation in Australian home prices.

They’re still falling across each of Australia’s mainland state capitals, according to CoreLogic’s daily Home Value Index, continuing the theme seen in late 2018.

The chart below from Macquarie Bank’s sales and trading team shows how things currently stand in mid-January.

Macquarie Bank

The national declines are still being led by Sydney and Melbourne although, at this point, they have been a little slower than what was seen in December.

Prices in Perth also remain under pressure while small falls have been recorded in Adelaide and Brisbane.

The current trends come with the caveat that market turnover at this time of the year is well below the levels seen during Autumn and Spring, meaning caution towards these results is warranted until market activity begins to pickup, usually after the Australia Day holiday in late January.

In prior years, reduced transaction activity during this period has often seen price growth increase a touch or lead to smaller price declines, similar to what’s been seen in Sydney and Melbourne so far in January.

In December, nationwide capital city prices, according to CoreLogic’s more comprehensive monthly Home Value Index, fell by 1.3%, the steepest percentage decline since 1983.

The declines were led by Sydney and Melbourne where median values fell by 1.8% and 1.5% respectively.

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