Perth housing market shows signs of life

Source: Business News

The worst could soon be over for Perth’s troubled housing market, with new data hinting at a bottoming of the downturn while warning that any recovery will likely be slow.

Perth dwelling values improved by 0.2 per cent last month, according to the latest CoreLogic RP Data report, with the Western Australian capital’s median now sitting at $480,000.

Perth home prices grew by 2.1 per cent for the three months to January. However, they are still down 3.2 per cent on a year-by-year basis.

Perth’s January result was slightly below the national increase of 0.7 per cent across the combined capital cities, with Darwin the only city to record a fall for the month.

But all capital cities have reported improved home values over the latest quarter.

“For Perth and Darwin, the rise in dwelling values over the rolling quarter may hint at a bottoming of the downturn, evident since 2014,” CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless said.

“Since dwelling values peaked in these markets they have reduced by a cumulative 7.7 per cent in Perth and 7.5 per cent in Darwin through to January 2017.

“Buyers still have a great deal of leverage in these markets, with listing numbers remaining high, long selling times and high rates of discounting.

“However, in another indication that conditions may be moving through the bottom of the cycle, transaction volumes moved higher across both markets prior to the seasonal downturn in December and January, whilst the average selling time reduced from previously higher levels.”

Mr Lawless said with economic and demographic conditions remaining weak in the Perth and Darwin markets, a recovery in dwelling values was likely to be a slow process.