House Prices Gathering Momentum, Says HIA

The latest update to ABS House Price Indexes shows house prices have gathered momentum in 2013, said the Housing Industry Association (HIA), the voice of Australia’s residential building industry.

“Capital city established house prices increased by 2.4 per cent over the June quarter, while annual growth came in at 5.1 per cent. This takes prices to a new all-time high” said HIA Economist, Diwa Hopkins.

“It’s also worth noting these latest improvements follow results that have turned out to better than initially estimated. The ABS revised upwards annual established house price growth in the December and March quarters of 2013,” added Diwa Hopkins.

“These price developments signal increased activity in the housing market, with lower interest rates an obvious contributor,” said Ms Hopkins. “Another likely contributor is improved confidence. While still delicately poised, confidence has mainly tracked higher in financial year 2012/13. This compares with
the previous year when pessimism was quite entrenched,” she said.

“The capital city Project Home Price Index shows more modest developments in new home prices.

These increased by 1.0 per cent over the June quarter, and are up by 3.9 per cent on a year earlier,” said Ms Hopkins. “This is consistent with other indicators signalling some growing momentum in new home building activity.”

“Relative to established house prices, these are modest developments in project home prices. They don’t appear to be signalling imminent inflationary pressures in residential construction costs,” noted Ms Hopkins.

Across capital cities, in the June 2013 quarter the established house price index increased by 2.7 per cent in Sydney, 2.4 per cent in Melbourne, 1.9 per cent in Brisbane, 0.3 per cent in Adelaide, 3.4 per cent in Perth, 2.9 per cent in Darwin and 1.0 per cent in Canberra. The index fell by 1.0 per cent in Hobart. These preliminary results will be subject to revision by the ABS.

Across capital cities, in the June 2013 quarter the project (new) house price index increased by 0.7 per cent in Sydney, 0.7 per cent in Melbourne, 2.0 per cent in Brisbane, 0.2 per cent in Adelaide, 1.5 per cent in Perth, 0.5 per cent in Hobart and 1.3 per cent in Darwin. The index fell by 0.2 per cent in Canberra.