The value of a home in Canberra jumped by 12 per cent in the year to the end of March, according to a new report.
CoreLogic's March monthly home value index also recorded its fastest growth nationally - 2.8 per cent - since October 1988, largely on the back of a 3.7 per cent increase in the month in Sydney.
It found the median price of a home in Canberra in March was $727,032. Houses sold for a median $819,707, and units for a median $485,887.
The annual rise in the ACT was more than double the rise in Sydney. In Melbourne, which was severely hit by the epidemic and lockdown, prices barely rose over the year, according to CoreLogic. Only Darwin saw a bigger annual rise than Canberra.
In the first three months of the year, Canberra's prices for units and houses rose by 6 per cent, less than Sydney and Hobart but more than the other state and territory capitals.
House value growth remains much stronger than unit price growth in Canberra. House values were up 3.3 per cent in March, 6.9 per cent so far this calendar year and 13.9 per cent compared with a year ago. Units were up 0.7 per cent in March, 2.3 per cent since January and 5.8 per cent compared with a year ago.
Property values are starting to revert to pre-epidemic trends, according to the survey. The bigger cities are starting to see the biggest rises in contrast to regional towns doing well.
The survey says: "Sydney and Melbourne have now staged a full recovery from earlier downturns. With the acceleration in capital gains across Sydney and Melbourne, the larger capitals have started to outpace many of the smaller cities that were previously leading the charge in growth."
"While we are expecting housing values to continue rising throughout 2021 and well into next year, it is reasonable to expect the pace of growth will slow. Earlier periods of similar exuberance have been previously quelled by factors such as rising interest rates, weaker economic conditions or changes to credit availability," the report said.
The turnaround following the onset of the covid pandemic was described as "remarkable", with Sydney house values now 2.6 per cent higher than their 2017 peak. This follows a 14.9 per cent drop in values from then until May 2019, and an additional 2.9 per cent fall amid the coronavirus downturn.
Nationally, values were up 2.8 per cent in March, 5.8 per cent in the quarter and 6.2 per cent on a year ago.
"These exceptionally strong growth conditions remain broad-based, with values rising by at least 1.4 per cent across each of the capital cities and 'rest-of-state' areas over the month.
"Sydney led the pack for capital gains in March, with values surging 3.7 per cent over the month and 6.7 per cent higher over the first quarter of the year.
Across Australia, lower density living values continue to trend higher in overall growth, with house values increasing by 3 per cent over the month while units were up by 1.9 per cent. In capital cities, the quarterly growth rate for houses more than doubled that of units, at 6.5 per cent and 3.1 per cent respectively.
According to CoreLogic's research director, Tim Lawless, "The last time Sydney housing values recorded a quarterly trend this strong was in June/July 2015. Following this brief surge, the pace of growth rapidly slowed as limits on investor lending kicked in to slow the market."
Across the regional markets, gains were highest in NSW, where values were up 2.8 per cent over the month.
The report said rental market conditions remained diverse, with big differences across regions and housing types.
The tightest rental markets are Darwin and Perth, where both house and unit rents are recording double-digit annual growth, well ahead of Canberra at a 5.8 per cent increase in rents for houses and a 3 per cent rental increase for units.
CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman said Australia was in the midst of "yet another housing boom with a synchronised upswing in property prices across capital cities and regional areas".
"The property market is booming, fuelled by record low borrowing costs, HomeBuilder stimulus and a low supply of homes listed for sale amid surging demand. Home lending and building approvals are broadly around record high levels," he said.
"While investor and interest-only home lending is lower than the peaks of the previous cycle, high loan-to-value ratio, high debt-to-income lending and broker-originated lending are increasing. ... some macroprudential policy tightening is becoming increasingly likely to cool the housing market later this year or beyond."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: