House Prices Remain Stable in Darwin Market

Written by Quentin Kilian in Northern Territory on November 30, 2012

The Real Estate Institute of the Northern Territory (REINT) has recently released its September quarter Real Estate Analysis Report, which shows stability in the residential housing market.  The September quarter median house price in Darwin was $568,250, which is a slight 0.3% decrease from the March quarter median, however also represents a 12.0% increase over the median recorded for this quarter last year.

Rents and vacancy rates continue to be the biggest issue in Darwin

Recently we have seen a plethora of press putting rents at $700 and above but with a nice big generic coverage area of ‘Darwin’.  The REINT calculates the ‘Average Weekly Rental’ based on a 3 bedroom home and 2 bedroom unit in ‘Great Darwin’. This covers Darwin, Northern Suburbs and Palmerston. The calculation for the September Quarter puts the average rent at $597 for a 3 bedroom house and $463 for a 2 bedroom unit.

That being said, when you break down the regions we are finding rents for a 3 bedroom house in Inner Darwin are now at $755 per week and for a 4 bedroom house at $925 per week. Similarly a 2 bedroom unit in Inner Darwin is commanding $562 per week and a 3 bedroom unit, due to unprecedented demand for them, is now averaging $919 per week.

Palmerston has also seen rises in rentals with 3 bedroom houses at $543 per week and 4 bedroom houses up 13.8% to $741 per week.

The Vacancy Rate has drifted out slightly from the last quarter to 1.5%, but before you get too excited about housing availability, this equates to less than 80 houses that ‘were’ available at the time we did the calculations.


Land availability at critical point

In the main we have seen the volume of land sales fall and median prices rise. This is indicative of what we have been stating for the past 3 years and that is, we are now in a critical time regarding land availability.

The volume of house sales fell by 15.4% and the median price moved down very slightly by 0.3% to a median for Greater Darwin of $568,250. You might note this is a fair bit different from some of the reports in the media recently; however the REINT data is drawn directly from NT Lands Titles Office and is collated and verified by the Australian Valuers Office, so we stand behind the veracity of our data.

On the other hand, the sales of units and townhouses jumped by 21% for the quarter, and when compared with the same time last year, they are up by 148%. The median price was a mixed lot with the overall median down by 2.3% but some areas like Nightcliff showing a jump in the median price of 13%.