Record number of homes sell for $1 million or more

  • By Zilla Efrat

Australia’s buoyant economic and property performance in 2021 has led to a record number of homes selling for $1 million or more over the past year, according to CoreLogic’s annual Million Dollar Markets report.

In the year to May, an additional 487 markets (450 house and 37 unit markets) joined the million dollar club. In total 1,367 or 30.4 per cent of house and unit markets analysed in May recorded a median value of $1 million or more.

CoreLogic research analyst Kaytlin Ezzy says high consumer sentiment, tight advertised supply and low interest rates fuelled strong home value growth throughout 2021.

“Despite values having risen across all capital cities and rest of state areas annually, we have seen a divergence in growth conditions across markets over the year to date,” she says.

“Since January, dwelling values across Sydney and Melbourne have started to decline, while values have continued to rise across South Australia and Queensland. More recently, Canberra, which had previously recorded many months of consecutive growth, recorded its first falls in dwelling values in some years in May.”

CoreLogic found that Sydney suburbs made up 26.3 per cent of the new million-dollar markets, which Ezzy finds unsurprising given the city’s median dwelling value has sat above $1 million since May 2021.

“While the largest concentration of new million-dollar markets in the city’s South West, Outer South West and Central Coast, Sydney’s million-dollar markets are fairly wide spread, with more than half of all Sydney sales over the 12 months to May transaction at or above $1 million,” she says.

Significant trophy sales in some of the country’s top prestige markets have been recorded in the year to date, including the $60 million transaction of a north-facing six-bedroom, six-bathroom waterfront home on Lindsay Avenue, Darling Point in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.

In Melbourne, a five-bedroom property in Orrong Road, Toorak sold for $38.5 million in February. The most expensive regional sale in 2022 has been a six-bedroom beachfront home on the Gold Coast’s millionaire’s row, Hedges Avenue at Mermaid Beach, which sold for $21.5 million in May.

Regional housing markets have shown a stronger growth trend through the pandemic to-date compared to capital cities. Values are up 41.4 per cent across regional Australia since March 2020 compared with a 21.8 per cent rise across the combined capital city markets.

Byron Bay houses in the Richmond-Tweed region recorded the highest median value in regional NSW at $2,741,847, up around $400,000 from this time last year. Regional NSW has 150 house and four unit markets with a median value at or above $1 million, more than double the number recorded this time last year. The Southern Highlands and Shoalhaven, Illawarra and Newcastle and Lake Macquarie regions had the highest concentration of million-dollar newcomers.

In regional Victoria, 22 house markets made the million-dollar list, of which most were in Geelong, where Aireys Inlet houses had the highest median at $2,189,874.

Queensland is the only state to have a similar number of million-dollar markets in its capital city of Brisbane (122) compared to the rest of the state area (107), says Ezzy. This is largely due to the popularity of the Gold and Sunshine coasts.

Mermaid Beach on the Gold Coast had a median value of $2,680,187, overtaking the Sunshine Coast’s Sunshine Beach ($2,651,978) as regional Queensland’s most expensive house market.

Yallingup houses in the Bunbury region of Western Australia remains the west’s only regional market to make the million-dollar list with a current median value of $1,620,473. Tasmania and South Australia had no regional million-dollar markets.