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The “big cities are back” as the property price rebound continues

Property prices will continue to grow after a “massive improvement” in conditions over winter, led by the big cities.

According to the Hotspotting Price Predictor Index (PPI), the City of Sydney has been the standout market over the past quarter, while a number of other areas in the bigger cities have also shown a resurgence.

Hotspotting General Manager Tim Graham said larger cities were performing best.

“The big cities are back,” Mr Graham said.

“While Perth and Adelaide remain as busy as before, the nation’s three biggest cities have mounted significant comebacks. 

“Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane are all markets on the rise, with Sydney ranked as the No.1 market nationwide based on having 82 per cent of suburbs with positive sales trends.” 

Mr Graham said some of the market turnarounds had been dramatic.

“The recovery signs we noted six months ago, and more strongly three months ago, have strengthened further – and now Sydney is Australia’s strongest market,” he said. 

“Some 80 per cent of suburbs have positive sales trends, which is the best percentage in the nation. 

“The revival is widespread across all sectors, with units notably to the fore.” 

Hotspotting Director Terry Ryder said the rate of price growth in cities and regional markets across Australia was likely to accelerate in the wake of major uplifts in sales activity in many locations. 

“Now we are seeing growth momentum in most corners of the nation,” Mr Ryder said.

“Among the capital cities and regional jurisdictions of the nation, only two – Canberra and Darwin – remain in the doldrums. 

“Everywhere else, resurgence and growth are the dominant themes.”

He said some of the other top-performing markets included Blacktown, Brisbane North, Casey, Gold Coast, Gladstone, Melbourne City, Stirling, Tea Tree Gully, and Wollongong.

Mr Ryder said Perth has been the nation’s strongest market for the past year, with the Western Australian capital continuing to thrive. 

“The cheaper markets are the strongest, while the middle markets and the inner-city are also attracting solid demand,” he said. 

“The turnaround in the Melbourne market has been quite dramatic. 

“Three months ago, we reported a glimmer of recovery but overall Greater Melbourne was still a struggling market. 

“Now the city’s markets are pumping, with 73 per cent of suburbs recording positive activity.” 

Mr Graham said it was a similar story in Brisbane, which has come charging back over the past quarter, when it was classified as having its weakest market in some eight years, but now is on the busiest in the nation. 

“The Adelaide market also continues to distinguish itself for its consistency of solid market performance,” Mr Graham said. 

“While the larger capital cities were struggling over the past year, Adelaide continued to attract steady buyer demand – and seven out of 10 suburbs still have good buyer activity. Consistency markets are the strongest cohort in Adelaide.” 

He said that more affordable locations are also doing well.

“The revival in buyer demand in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane has included recovery in the affordable areas,” he said.

 “The City of Blacktown has led the resurgence in western Sydney, the City of Casey is prominent in the Greater Melbourne comeback, and outer-ring precincts of Greater Brisbane have seen buyer demand recover. 

“Meanwhile, the bottom end continues to thrive in the Adelaide and Perth markets.”

Mr Ryder said the rise of apartments as the dwelling of choice for more and more buyers is also undeniable.

 “In several of our capital cities, the strongest market precincts are the inner-city areas where apartments dominate,” he said. 

“The No.1 municipality in Greater Melbourne is the City of Melbourne, and the City of Sydney has similar status in the Greater Sydney market in this Spring survey.”

Despite the focus on larger cities, Mr Ryder said that there is still steady demand for regional locations.

“We’ve seen multiple headlines suggesting that demand in regional markets has collapsed and that prices are no longer rising,” he said. 

“Our analysis refutes that. 

“Regional markets remain strong and indeed we have recorded a significant upturn in buyer demand in the regional areas of the eastern states.”

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a senior journalist at Elite Agent specialising in finance and real estate.