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House prices tipped to rise in 2013 | Updated: 8:22:34 AM, Thursday December 13, 2012

Australian property prices are tipped to rise in 2013 as increased affordability and interest rate cuts encourage buyers into the market.

A real estate study released on Wednesday showed a slight dip in national property prices in the three months to the end of September, but they were unchanged over the year.

The Bendigo Bank/Real Estate Institute of Australia real estate market report showed the weighted average median house price for capital cities fell 0.6 per cent in the September quarter, compared to the June quarter.

However the average price for other dwellings, including as apartments, rose 1.2 per cent in the September quarter.

While Sydney remained top of the list for the most expensive median house properties, prices 0.4 per cent from the previous quarter.

Darwin was the next expensive city at $568,300, followed by Melbourne at $530,000.

The cheapest median capital city price was in Hobart at $340,000.

However, REIA president Peter Bushby said prices were expected to improve in 2013.

‘We expect to see increased growth in the market based on improving affordability, coupled with recent interest rate reductions,’ he said.

‘The rate cuts were a step in the right direction, and should encourage investors to start looking at investment properties.’

A strong demand for rental properties would be encouraging for would-be property investors, while buying a home would also become more attractive through increased affordability, Mr Bushby said.

The Reserve Bank of Australia cut the cash rate by 0.25 per cent to three per cent at its December 4 meeting, following earlier cuts in May, June and October.

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