Australia's house prices rise in second quarter

14:26, August 04, 2010      

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Australia's official capital city house price index has climbed 3.1 percent in the June quarter, with prices up 18.4 percent on the year, new data released on Wednesday showed.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) weighted average capital city house price index for the June quarter showed Sydney had the strongest rise of 4.9 percent, while Hobart prices grew only 0.1 percent.

Melbourne had a rise of 3.6 percent, Adelaide 3.2 percent, Darwin 2.8 percent and Canberra 2.1 percent.

However, the ABS figures look only at house prices, not unit prices, and look at the median house price.

Since the end of the First Home Owner Boost and the Reserve Bank's move to raise interest rates from three percent late last year to the current level of 4.5 percent, the proportion of first home buyers among purchasers has fallen from around 28 percent to about 16 percent.

"That means there are less low price range houses changing hands, and relatively more high-end properties, thus pushing up the bureau's index," ABC News reported.

In contrast, RP Data Property Reports's more comprehensive weighted index, which included units, town houses and terraces in cities and regional areas, showed a rise in dwelling prices of just 0.1 percent over the June quarter, and a fall in home values of 0.7 percent in the month June.



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