Home owners are holding back from selling their properties until much later, in the hope of getting a better deal, as house prices begin to bounce back.
People are now sitting on their biggest investment for at least 25 per cent longer than they were a decade ago, figures released by consultancy RP Data show.
The average length of ownership for houses, based on data on properties sold over the past year, was 9.3 years, and 8.2 years for units.
Ten years ago the average holding period for a house was 6.8 years, and for a unit 5.9 years.
Property owners in Melbourne, which has suffered a slump in prices in recent years, waited almost 11 years before selling their houses, the survey found.
Home prices across Australia's capital cities rose 0.3 per cent in February, the second consecutive monthly increase following a 1.2 per cent rise in January.
RP Data said the average holding period for houses and units remained relatively static until late 2005 and increased after this time.
The company's analyst Cameron Kusher said the increase in holding periods was logical when measured against a decline in sales.
"As a result, transaction costs such as agent commissions and stamp duty have also increased," Mr Kusher said.
"Clearly, there is no incentive for home owners to move more frequently."
Higher stamp duty in Victoria also acted as a disincentive for selling and repurchasing homes.
Regional and coastal areas of Victoria dominated the list for both houses and units with the longest average holding period.
The mining hotspot of Port Hedland recorded a holding period for houses of just 4.4 years, while Weipa in Far North Queensland recorded the shortest holding period for units, at 3.4 years.
High home values in capital cities have also contributed to the lack of movement.
In February, the median price of a home in Sydney was $540,000, while in Melbourne it was $482,000.The median prices in Perth and Brisbane were $465,000 and $420,000 respectively.
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