The re-emergence of first home buyers is continuing at pace thanks to an environment of softer property prices in some major capital cities.

QBE’s Australian Housing Outlook Report 2018-21 has pointed to a silver lining in the property market revealing prospective first-time owner occupants are, in some centres, revelling in the current ‘moderate’ downturn.

The recently released report has observed first home buyers surging back into the markets, with lending to this group at its highest national level since 2010.

Loans to first home buyers increased by 74 per cent in Sydney in the last 12 months and 28 per cent across the country, a trend that is expected to continue for at least the next 12 months, the report suggests.

This is the 17th year QBE has partnered with BIS Oxford Economics to produce a deep analysis of Australia’s residential housing market and its three-year outlook.

The report added another voice to the growing chorus of experts suggesting a weakening of Melbourne and Sydney markets in 2019 and 2020.

Predicting a more subdued downturn the QBE report has Sydney prices falling in 2019, before showing some signs of improvement in 2021. House prices are expected to fall by 1.2 per cent over the forecast period, whilst units are predicted to fall by 3.1 per cent.

Melbourne prices are also expected to continue falling over the majority of the forecast period, with houses dropping by 2.5 per cent and units 2.1 per cent.

Meanwhile, in Adelaide house prices are forecast to grow by 12.4 per cent over 2018 to 2021, while Hobart unit prices are expected to increase by 9.3 per cent.

Robust results are also predicted for Brisbane, Canberra and Hobart house prices with growth expectations at 11.3 per cent, 10.4 per cent and 7.9 per cent respectively over 2018 to 2021.

Many regional cities too are forecast to grow, benefiting from affordability issues within the major hubs.

For greater insight into the market, read the full report by clicking here.