House sales head downwards

HOUSE sales appear to be on the decline, falling almost 16 per cent during the March quarter compared to the previous quarter according to the latest housing report by the Real Estate Institute of WA.

There were 12,131 established houses sales during the quarter which, though down from the December quarter, is still 9 per cent up on the same quarter last year.

REIWA president Neville Fox said he was not surprised by the results after the very high sales achieved late last year.

“The factors behind the decline in sales in 2000 include an end to the pre-GST buying frenzy, the recent interest rate increases and a decline in first home buyer numbers,” Mr Fox said.

The new home building sector was also hit with approvals dropping 23 per cent seasonally adjusted in March compared with the previous month.

The last time building approvals were at the same level was more than twelve months ago.

Despite the drop in sales and approvals, the median price of houses continued to climb.

Median residential property values rose in 73 per cent of Perth’s suburbs.

Housing finance figures released recently by the Australian Bureau of Statistics paint a similar picture.

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