South Australia notches a new record despite declining sales

The South Australian property market posted a record median price during the December quarter despite a decline in the volume of sales, the Real Estate Institute of South Australia says.

Data from the state’s Valuer-General shows South Australia posted a 3.48 per cent increase in its median house price over the previous quarter and a 15.53 per cent increase year-on-year.

Metropolitan Adelaide posted a 2.13 per cent quarterly increase and year-on-year growth of 11.57 per cent.

The volume of sales during the December quarter fell 7.18 per cent across the state and 6.98 per cent in metropolitan Adelaide.

REISA Chief Executive Officer Andrea Heading said the results reflected the fact buyers were still willing to pay strong prices for the right property.

The median price across South Australia is $595,000, while for just metropolitan Adelaide it is $670,000.

“REISA expected the volume of sales to be down this quarter but we are pleased that the median price has once again smashed the record with an increase of 3.48 per cent across South Australia since the last quarter,” Ms Heading said.

“The fall in sales volumes is “modest.

“While sales continue to fall across South Australia and metropolitan Adelaide abetted by continuing interest rate rises and general uncertainty in local and national economic outlooks, the modest and declining scale of the decreases still clearly demonstrates that consumers are entering the market with optimism and confidence.”

Ms Heading also acknowledged the recent increases in median prices would mean some buyers faced difficulty entering the market.

“While South Australia continues to stand firm against an uncertain economic environment, it must be remembered that an ever increasing median price certainly impedes home ownership and affordability,” she said.

“The priority of the South Australian Government must be to ensure an adequate housing supply to address the needs of vendors and purchasers and restore the Australian dream of owning your own home.”

Units defy the downturn

Bucking the downward trend in sales activity was the apartment sector.

“What was especially pleasing was the fact that sales of units and apartments were up from the previous quarter which certainly defied the national and local trends,” Ms Heading said.

“Units and apartments across metropolitan Adelaide also set a new record median price of $465,000 which was up 5.88 per cent from the previous quarter and a fantastic 12.05 per cent from the same quarter last year.”

Cash rate uncertainty leads buyers to pause plans

Ms Heading said REISA anticipated an uptick in sales volumes when the RBA stopped hiking the cash rate.

“While the volume of sales were once again down, this is entirely attributable to the current economic climate and the substantial interest rate rises that have been happening for a few months now,” she said.

“We expect the volume of sales to really bounce back once the economic situation is resolved, inflation is reined in and more consumers are able to enter into a real estate transaction with certainty.”

Suburbs which have seen the largest growth over a 12 month period (with 10 or more recorded sales
in the current quarter) were Henley Beach (38.74 per cent), Elizabeth North (36.19 per cent) and McLaren Vale (33.48 per cent).

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Jack Needham

Jack Needham was a Digital Editor at Elite Agent in 2022 & 2023