Housing affordability has improved in many of the major markets across Australia. The HIA Affordability Index for Australia for the September Quarter was 1.5% better than in the previous quarter and a 2.2% improvement on the same time last year.

The biggest improvement has occurred in Sydney, following recent price decreases.

“A trend of improving affordability is taking root in the major capital cities,” says HIA acting principal economist Geordan Murray.

“While Sydney remains the least affordable market in the country by quite a margin, the index is 9% higher than a year earlier which is a significant positive step. The improvement in affordability has primarily been driven by the declining trend in home prices over the last year.”

He says the analysis also shows improved affordability in Melbourne, although to a lesser degree than in Sydney. “As the price cycle progresses, affordability will continue to improve and this could be bolstered by wages growth,” Murray says.