Buyers make the most of opportunities as Perth market recovers

Perth’s property market is showing signs of promise with new data signalling a small boost to property prices in the first month of the year.

The CoreLogic Hedonic Home Value Index, released on Wednesday, shows dwelling values in Perth improved by 0.2% in January, resulting in a 2.1 % increase in the past three months.

House values remained unchanged in January, while unit prices lifted 2%.

The median property price for Perth is $480,000.

Nationally, property prices in capital cities rose by 0.7% in January.

CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless says the figures indicated there were signs of improvement in the Perth property market, but expected it to be a slow recovery.

“Buyers still have a great deal of leverage in these (Perth and Darwin) markets, with listing numbers remaining high, long selling times and high rates of discounting,” Lawless says.

“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.

“With economic and demographic conditions remaining weak in these markets, a recovery in dwelling values is likely to be a slow process.”

Property Council of Australia WA executive director Lino Iacomella says potential buyers in WA’s residential market appeared to be taking notice of affordable opportunities.

“It’s been good value for the past few years and the market in WA, particularly in Perth, has been fed a lot of news that property values have been flat and in some cases going backwards,” Iacomella says.

“Now there’s a genuine feel that it’s time to get in before all these opportunities get snapped up.”

Iacomella said the $5000 increase to the State Government’s $10,000 First Homeowners Grant and changes to the loan assistance program, Keystart, which were announced in January, could be credited for some of the extra interest.

Townhouses

The Property Council of WA says the increase in buyer demand is partially driven by recent changes to the First Homeowners Grant and the Keystart program.

“The recent boost in the first home owners grant has helped boost buyer interest as well as changes to the Keystart lending criteria,” he says.

Late last year, the WA Government announced the First Homeowners Grant would be increased from $10,000 to $15,000 for 12 months, starting January 1, 2017.

At the time, Premier Colin Barnett said the move would help first home buyers enter the property market and stimulate construction in WA’s housing sector.

In addition, Keystart’s metropolitan income limits were increased by $20,000 in a bid to help potential homebuyers obtain loans and encourage more West Australians to realise the great Australian dream of homeownership.


Article by: Nicole Cox / REA

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