Property Buzz

Money & market

Melbourne and Adelaide outrank Sydney for population density, report finds


A new report by CoreLogic has revealed that Melbourne and Adelaide have higher overall population densities than Sydney, despite the latter’s larger portion of medium to high-density housing stock and generally smaller block sizes.

According to the report, Melbourne has the highest population density among Australian capital cities, with 521 residents per square kilometre, followed by Adelaide with 444 residents per square kilometre. Sydney ranks third, with 441 residents per square kilometre.

CoreLogic Research Director Tim Lawless attributes Sydney’s lower population density to the larger land area that comprises the metropolitan region, which includes the Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Penrith, and Sutherland, covering 12,369 square kilometres.

The report also found that every capital city is recording a rise in population density, with Perth experiencing the largest population increase over the past 20 years at 54.4%, despite having the highest portion of detached houses at 85.5% of its housing stock.

In contrast, the ACT has seen a significant rise in medium to high-density housing stock, increasing from 25.1% of all dwellings 10 years ago to 34.2% in 2024, while maintaining a relatively high median block size for houses sold over the past 12 months at 750 square metres.

When analysing population density at a more granular level, the report found that inner-city precincts of Melbourne and Sydney dominate the highest-density locations nationally, with Melbourne’s CBD-North topping the list since 2013, followed by Southbank-East and Sydney’s Haymarket.

Outside of Sydney and Melbourne, the highest population density areas were concentrated in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, the Gold Coast’s Surfers Paradise, and the ACT’s Kingston.


The report also examined the relationship between population density and housing trends, finding that high-density unit markets generally show lower value growth over both the short and long term, potentially due to higher levels of new housing supply in these precincts.

Previous post
Next post
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *