The Perth housing market is leading the nation down with new figures showing a sharp drop in values over the month and the year.
RP Data-Rismark, in its monthly house value report, said Perth house values fell 0.8 per cent last month.
Over 2014, house values in the city have fallen 1.3 per cent, the only capital in the country where values have fallen through the year.
Perth’s value was the strongest of the nation’s 5 biggest cities.
In Melbourne, house values dropped 3.6 per cent while they were down 1.9 per cent in Adelaide, 1.7 per cent in Brisbane and one per cent in Sydney.
Canberra (up by 0.1 per cent) and Darwin (0.2 per cent) only marginally avoided posting falls.
Over the past 12 months, house values in Perth are still positive, up by 5.7 per cent while in Sydney they are up by 18 per cent.
It is not just house values that have ebbed.
The values of units in Perth dropped by 1.1 per cent in May to be 2.7 per cent lower through the past three months. Only a strong start to 2014 has kept unit values above water, eking out a 0.1 per cent gain so far.
RP’s research director Tim Lawless said the fall in May was the first month-on-month drop in values across the country since 2013.
“The month-on-month fall in capital city dwelling values is likely due in part to seasonal phenomenon, but may also be indicative of a broader trend towards cooler housing market conditions,” he said.
“Historically, housing market conditions have softened in April and May as the market rebalances from what is typically a seasonally strong first quarter and also as a result of cooler climatic conditions during the autumn and winter months.
“Outside of the seasonality, we have been seeing signs that the housing market is at or approaching the peak of the growth cycle.”
Mr Lawless said auction clearance rates, a sign watched closely in Sydney and Melbourne, was also falling back in a further sign of the softness in the overall market.
He said the recent drop in consumer confidence may also be linked to the fall in housing prices.