Home prices near flat in April: CoreLogic

Sydney home prices stagnated in April, leading to the lowest rise in capital city prices in almost a year and a half.

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Australian capital city home prices rose a mere 0.1 per cent in April, according to the CoreLogic Hedonic Home Value Index.

CoreLogic director of research Tim Lawless said the biggest weight on overall prices was a Sydney prices flat at a median price of $860,000 for the month, while Melbourne prices were up just 0.5 per cent to $650,000.

“The two hottest housing markets in the nation have shown signs of slowing down in April, with the CoreLogic Hedonic Home Value Index recording a rise of just 0.1 per cent over April, the lowest month-on-month rise in capital city dwelling values since December 2015,” he said in a note.

Despite subdued rises on other cities – Hobart was the strongest with a rise of 1.0 per cent to $363,200 – Mr Lawless said the trends in the overall housing market remain positive.

He said Australian home prices were up 2.9 per cent in the three months to March 31, and 11.2 per cent in annually, to $625,800.

Mr Lawless noted the subdued April result came amid public holidays, mortgage rates edging higher and a tightening of lending standards, especially to investors, by the bank regulator APRA.

“We need to be cautious in calling a peak in the market after only one month of soft results,” he said.

“April, in particular, coincides with seasonal factors including Easter, school holidays and ANZAC Day long weekend.”

He added that the softer results should also be viewed against a backdrop of ever-evolving regulation aimed at slowing investment and interest-only mortgage lending.”

Adelaide home prices were up 0.8 per cent at $430,000, Brisbane prices were up 0.6 per cent at $481,000 and Darwin prices were up 0.5 per cent at $467,000.

Meanwhile, Canberra prices slumped 2.8 per cent to $605,000 and Perth prices were down one per cent to $472,000.