Hobart houses grow 17.3% as Darwin units slump 14.0%

Hobart houses grow 17.3% as Darwin units slump 14.0%

Australia’s eight capital cities have wildly different house and unit markets, according to new quarterly price stats from Domain.

The new report, which covers the December quarter, shows that Australia’s median price has now climbed to $813,024 for houses and $557,794 for units.

Other key facts include:

  • Sydney has the most expensive house and unit prices
  • Hobart has the cheapest house prices
  • Adelaide has the cheapest unit prices
  • Hobart has the best quarterly house price growth, best annual house price growth and best annual unit price growth
  • Darwin has the worst quarterly house price growth, worst annual house price growth and worst annual unit price growth – but the best quarterly unit price growth
  • Brisbane has the worst unit price growth over the quarter

Here is a city-by-city breakdown of the house and unit markets:


Median house price = $1,179,519

  • Quarterly change = +0.5%
  • Annual change = +4.0%

Median unit price = $736,879

  • Quarterly change = +0.4%
  • Annual change = +1.7%

Key stat

  • Sydney’s median house price is lower than six months ago

Domain commentary

“Sydney’s double-digit growth phase appears to be in the rear-view mirror, and with no further rate cuts in sight, the market may continue to moderate in 2018. Demand is likely to weaken, as the heightened investor activity that Sydney has experienced is unlikely to be significantly offset by the rising number of first home buyers.”


Median house price = $903,859

  • Quarterly change = +3.2%
  • Annual change = +11.3%

Median unit price = $506,079

  • Quarterly change = +2.8%
  • Annual change = +8.0%

Key stat

  • Melbourne units recorded their strongest annual price growth in seven years

Domain commentary

“Similar to Sydney, first home buyer numbers in Melbourne have risen, recording its highest level of activity since 2009. This can be attributed largely to the Victorian government’s entry-level buyer incentives. In the coming months we are likely to continue to see a higher demand for entry-level homes, helping to drive price growth at the lower end of the market, as well as support regional price movements throughout the state.”


Median house price = $903,859

  • Quarterly change = +3.2%
  • Annual change = +11.3%

Median unit price = $506,079

  • Quarterly change = +2.8%
  • Annual change = +8.0%

Key stat

  • Brisbane unit prices are at a four-year low

Domain commentary

“The surge of new apartments in Brisbane remains ahead of the demand, and although this continues to impact unit prices, population increases and a slowdown in new development starts and completions may work together to help balance the market.”


Median house price = $557,567

  • Quarterly change = +0.5%
  • Annual change = -2.5%

Median unit price = $369,402

  • Quarterly change = +1.0%
  • Annual change = -1.7%

Key stat

  • Negative price growth for Perth units has improved to its lowest level in almost three years

Domain commentary

“Perth’s housing market outlook for 2018 depends largely on whether the city’s economy and population track upwards throughout the year.”


Median house price = $522,815

  • Quarterly change = +0.9%
  • Annual change = +3.5%

Median unit price = $315,794

  • Quarterly change = -1.6%
  • Annual change = +2.0%

Key stat

  • Adelaide has the lowest median unit price of all the capitals

Domain commentary

“Adelaide has avoided the extreme price surges impacting Australia’s east coast markets. Its steady pace of growth and diverse coastal lifestyle makes it a reliable location for buyers heading into 2018.”


Median house price = $443,521

  • Quarterly change = +10.0%
  • Annual change = +17.3%

Median unit price = $318,467

  • Quarterly change = -0.8%
  • Annual change = +14.2%

Key stat

  • Hobart house prices are at record levels

Domain commentary

“It has been over a decade since Hobart experienced such a surge in house prices over a quarter, and the capital city’s results over the December quarter highlight the growing demand for homes in the Tasmanian capital.”


Median house price = $753,516

  • Quarterly change = +5.0%
  • Annual change = +8.4%

Median unit price = $426,124

  • Quarterly change = +0.1%
  • Annual change = +0.4%

Key stat

  • Canberra house prices have reached record highs

Domain commentary

“Canberra house prices have been tracking upward for 15 consecutive months, delivering the second-best performance this quarter after Hobart. Renewed buyer and seller confidence has provided the nation’s capital with a substantial price boost that will likely continue throughout 2018.”


Median house price = $565,696

  • Quarterly change = -2.6%
  • Annual change = -7.4%

Median unit price = $395,279

  • Quarterly change = +9.3%
  • Annual change = -14.0%

Key stat

  • Darwin house prices are at an eight-year low

Domain commentary

“Darwin was the only capital city to record a median house price decline over the quarter and over the year, and a strengthening in the local market depends primarily on the state of the economy as we head into 2018.”


Median house price = $813,024

  • Quarterly change = +1.4%
  • Annual change = +5.0%

Median unit price = $557,794

  • Quarterly change = +0.3%
  • Annual change = +2.3%

Key stat

  • National annual house price growth is at 15-month lows

Domain commentary

“A varied level of price growth across all capital cities was reflected in both the national median house and unit prices this quarter. Overall, prices rose marginally in the three months to December but the slower pace has weighed down the annual growth to its lowest rate since September 2016.”

Did you find this helpful? Why not share this news?



Money Health Newsletter

Subscribe for news, tips and expert opinions to help you make smarter financial decisions

By signing up, you agree to the ratecity.com.au Privacy & Cookies Policy and Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy


Learn more about home loans

Can I get a NAB home loan on casual employment?

While many lenders consider casual employees as high-risk borrowers because of their fluctuating incomes, there are a few specialist lenders, such as NAB, which may provide home loans to individuals employed on a casual basis. A NAB home loan for casual employment is essentially a low doc home loan specifically designed to help casually employed individuals who may be unable to provide standard financial documents. However, since such loans are deemed high risk compared to regular home loans, you could be charged higher rates and receive lower maximum LVRs (Loan to Value Ratio, which is the loan amount you can borrow against the value of the property).

While applying for a home loan as a casual employee, you will likely be asked to demonstrate that you've been working steadily and might need to provide group certificates for the last two years. It is at the lender’s discretion to pick either of the two group certificates and consider that to be your income. If you’ve not had the same job for several years, providing proof of income could be a bit of a challenge for you. In this scenario, some lenders may rely on your year to date (YTD) income, and instead calculate your yearly income from that.

Remaining loan term

The length of time it will take to pay off your current home loan, based on the currently-entered mortgage balance, monthly repayment and interest rate.

How can I get ANZ home loan pre-approval?

Shopping for a new home is an exciting experience and getting a pre-approval on the loan may give you the peace of mind that you are looking at properties within your budget. 

At the time of applying for the ANZ Bank home loan pre-approval, you will be required to provide proof of employment and income, along with records of your savings and debts.

An ANZ home loan pre-approval time frame is usually up to three months. However, being pre-approved doesn’t necessarily mean you will get your home loan. Other factors could lead to your home loan application being rejected, even with a prior pre-approval. Some factors include the property evaluation not meeting the bank’s criteria or a change in your financial circumstances.

You can make an application for ANZ home loan pre-approval online or call on 1800100641 Mon-Fri 8.00 am to 8.00 pm (AEST).

Interest Rate

Your current home loan interest rate. To accurately calculate how much you could save, an accurate interest figure is required. If you are not certain, check your bank statement or log into your mortgage account.

Savings over

Select a number of years to see how much money you can save with different home loans over time.

e.g. To see how much you could save in two years by switching mortgages,  set the slider to 2.

Why should I get an ING home loan pre-approval?

When you apply for an ING home loan pre-approval, you might be required to provide proof of employment and income, savings, as well as details on any on-going debts. The lender could also make a credit enquiry against your name. If you’re pre-approved, you will know how much money ING is willing to lend you. 

Please note, however, that a pre-approval is nothing more than an idea of your ability to borrow funds and is not the final approval. You should receive the home loan approval  only after finalising the property and submitting a formal loan application to the lender, ING. Additionally, a pre-approval does not stay valid indefinitely, since your financial circumstances and the home loan market could change overnight.



How long does Bankwest take to approve home loans?

Full approval for a home loan usually involves a property valuation, which, Bankwest suggests, can take “a week or two”. As a result, getting your home loan approved may take longer. However, you may get full approval within this time if you applied for and received conditional approval, sometimes called a pre-approval, from Bankwest before finalising the home you want to buy.  

Another way of speeding up approvals can be by completing, signing, and submitting your home loan application digitally. Essentially, you give the bank or your mortgage broker a copy of your home’s sale contract and then complete the rest of the steps online. Bankwest has claimed this cuts the approval time to less than four days, although this may only happen if your income and credit history can be verified easily, or if your home’s valuation doesn’t take time.

What is a low-deposit home loan?

A low-deposit home loan is a mortgage where you need to borrow more than 80 per cent of the purchase price – in other words, your deposit is less than 20 per cent of the purchase price.

For example, if you want to buy a $500,000 property, you’ll need a low-deposit home loan if your deposit is less than $100,000 and therefore you need to borrow more than $400,000.

As a general rule, you’ll need to pay LMI (lender’s mortgage insurance) if you take out a low-deposit home loan. You can use this LMI calculator to estimate your LMI payment.

Does each product always have the same rating?

No, the rating you see depends on a number of factors and can change as you tell us more about your loan profile and preferences. The reasons you may see a different rating:

  • Lenders have made changes. Our ratings show the relative competitiveness of all the products listed at a given time. As the listing change, so do the ratings.
  • You have updated you profile. If you increase your loan amount, the impact of different rates and fees will change which loans are the lowest cost for you.
  • You adjust your preferences. The more you search for flexible loan features, the more importance we assign to the Flexibility Score. You can also adjust your Flexibility Weighting yourself, which will recalculate the ratings with preference given to more flexible loans.

What is stamp duty?

Stamp duty is the tax that must be paid when purchasing a property in Australia.

It is calculated by the state government based on the selling price of the property. These charges may differ for first homebuyers. You can calculate the stamp duty for your property using our stamp duty calculator.

What is the average annual percentage rate?

Also known as the comparison rate, or sometimes the ‘true rate’ of a loan, the average annual percentage rate (AAPR) is used to indicate the overall cost of a loan after considering all the fees, charges and other factors, such as introductory offers and honeymoon rates.

The AAPR is calculated based on a standardised loan amount and loan term, and doesn’t include any extra non-standard charges.

What is a variable home loan?

A variable rate home loan is one where the interest rate can and will change over the course of your loan. The rate is determined by your lender, not the Reserve Bank of Australia, so while the cash rate might go down, your bank may decide not to follow suit, although they do broadly follow market conditions. One of the upsides of variable rates is that they are typically more flexible than their fixed rate counterparts which means that a lot of these products will let you make extra repayments and offer features such as offset accounts.

Monthly Repayment

Your current monthly home loan repayment. To accurately calculate how much you could save, an accurate payment figure is required. If you are not certain, check your bank statement.

Can I apply for an ANZ non-resident home loan? 

You may be eligible to apply for an ANZ non-resident home loan only if you meet the following two conditions:

  1. You hold a Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa or its predecessor, the Temporary Skilled Work (subclass 457) visa.
  2. Your job is included in the Australian government’s Medium and Long Term Strategic Skills List. 

However, non-resident home loan applications may need Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval in addition to meeting ANZ’s Mortgage Credit Requirements. Also, they may not be eligible for loans that require paying for Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI). As a result, you may not be able to borrow more than 80 per cent of your home’s value. However, you can apply as a co-borrower with your spouse if they are a citizen of either Australia or New Zealand, or are a permanent resident.