Home prices up 0.3 per cent in February

Home prices across Australia’s capital cities rose for the second consecutive month in February.

Home prices rose by an average of 0.3 per cent in the month, following a 1.2 per cent rise in January, according to the monthly RP Data/Rismark Home Value index released on Friday. RP Data research director Tim Lawless said that while the results were positive, further gains were needed to offset recent falls. “While the housing market is staging a demonstrable recovery, we need to see values rise a further 4.3 per cent before we can say that a technical recovery has been achieved, ” he said.

“That amount of value appreciation is likely to be at least six months away”. He said the figures made it less likely the Reserve Bank of Australia would cut the cash rate, currently at three per cent, at its March 5 board meeting. “The quarterly trend rate of housing value growth is slightly higher than inflation and pretty much in line with wages growth, which is arguably exactly what the RBA is hoping for,” Mr Lawless said.

According to the survey, Melbourne, up 1.5 per cent, Darwin, up 2.3 per cent and Canberra, up 1.9 per cent, all recorded rises during the month. But those gains were partially offset by falls in Brisbane, down 1.1 per cent, Adelaide, down 0.8 per cent, Perth, down 0.8 per cent, and Hobart, down 0.9 per cent. Home prices rose by 0.1 per cent in Sydney, which remained the most expensive capital with a medican house price of $600,00 and a median unit price of $475,000. Hobart was the cheapest capital with a median house price of $325,000 and a median unit price of $248,000.

Source: Brett Thompson, Shaw Stockbroking