The Sydney suburb of Point Piper has been identified as the most expensive in Australia.
According to research from RP Data, houses in the Sydney suburb have a median value of more than $5 million.
But despite the hefty price tag, Point Piper failed to provide estate agents with the highest gross value of sales, with that honour going to the Sydney north shore suburb of Mosman.
The data show that more than $681 million worth of properties were sold in Mosman over the course of 2012.
But while the suburb proved very lucrative for estate agents, on the whole the Australian property market has been fairly sluggish over the course of 2012, with median values slipping by 0.1 per cent across the combined eight capital cities.
RP Data research analyst Cameron Kusher said the property market would remain relatively flat.
“There is likely to be a continued variance in performances from city to city and region to region. Property markets in Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Darwin, where home values have corrected more than the other capital cities, may be the markets to watch for improving conditions,” Mr Kusher said.
“We are already seeing signs of a recovery in these markets, particularly in Perth and Darwin. On the other hand, markets such as Melbourne, where capital gains have had a strong run are more likely to see weaker conditions.
“The number of properties being advertised for sale across Melbourne has ramped up very quickly; new listings have remained fairly constant; however, the total number of homes available for sale simply hasn’t been absorbed due to a slowing rate of sale.
“Due to the high capital gains and a comparatively weak rental market, Melbourne rental yields are also comparatively low.
“There seems to be a likelihood of further interest rate cuts in the near future by the RBA, especially in light of the revelations of a slowing Chinese economy and a substantial decline in commodity prices and the likelihood of much slower economic growth over the third quarter of 2012.
“The rising rental costs and lower interest rates may, in certain areas, result in some renters now looking to enter into home ownership.
“On the other hand, consumer caution persists and consumers broadly continue to prefer to pay down debt and shun new debt, which is likely to restrict any significant improvement borne through lower interest rates.”
Mr Kusher said the big wild card remains the global economy.
The likelihood of further economic uncertainty is high, which will continue to dampen consumer confidence and their willingness to spend on high commitment decisions like purchasing a property, he said.
“As a result, any significant growth in values across the national housing market would appear to be some way off. The recent improvement in sales transactions will be vital to a sustainable return to value growth across the country. However, it will need to be maintained for a number of months before there is evidence to proclaim a recovery.”