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Housing market may have ‘moved through the worst’

While dwelling values continued on their downward slide in April, new CoreLogic data shows that the pace of decline has been slowing.

According to property research group CoreLogic’s latest Hedonic Home Value Index, national home values fell by 0.5 per cent over the month in April to the median price of $519,879.

This represents a decline of 7.2 per cent year-on-year, the largest annual decline since the year ending in February 2009, and is 7.9 per cent below the peak reached in September 2017.

However, CoreLogic’s head of research, Tim Lawless, said that a range of indicators, including home loan activity and auction clearance rates, show that the housing market may have “moved through the worst of the downturn”, with the rate of decline in values slowing since hitting a monthly low point in December 2018 (-1.1 per cent).

“The improvement in the rate of decline is attributable to an easing in the market downturn across Sydney and Melbourne, where values were previously falling much faster,” he said.

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Similar to the nationwide trend, the median dwelling price in all capital cities combined dropped by 0.5 per cent in April to $593,401.

All capital cities saw dwelling values fall in April except Canberra (+0.4 per cent), with Sydney (-0.7 per cent) and Melbourne (-0.6 per cent) continuing to lead the decline, according to CoreLogic.

In Sydney and Melbourne, the median prices slipped to $780,672 and $621,759, respectively. The figures represent year-on-year contractions of 10.9 per cent and 10.0 per cent, respectively.

Bucking the metropolitan trend, median dwelling prices in Canberra went up to $596,405 in April, which represents a year-on-year increase of 2.5 per cent.

Despite Tasmania’s growth in house values in preceding months, in April, Hobart’s median dwelling price decreased by 0.9 per cent over the month to $452,302. The price is still 3.8 per cent higher than April 2018.

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Darwin’s rate of decline in housing values was the largest in April, at -1.2 per cent over the month to $390,621. On a year-on-year basis, this price fell 7.1 per cent.

Median values in Brisbane and Perth both fell over the month by 0.4 per cent in April to $484,047 and $440,546, respectively. When compared to a year ago, the April median prices are 1.9 per cent and 8.3 per cent lower, respectively.

The lowest rate of decline in median housing values was seen in Adelaide, at -0.1 per cent over the month to $430,352 in April. Compared to the figure recorded in April last year, the median price is 4.6 per cent higher.

Regional markets, combined, have not been immune to the housing downturn, with values dropping by 0.3 per cent over the month in April to $374,712, which is 2.6 per cent below the median price recorded a year ago.

[Related: Sydney median house price $170,000 below peak]

Housing market may have ‘moved through the worst’
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