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Population in Snapshot

As the year draws to a close, it's a good time to take a look at Australia in snapshot. The latest census figures and Housing Affordability Sentiment Index results provides a range of interesting data that could prove useful to both property buyers and sellers.

• Australia's population has risen by 8.3 per cent to 21.5 million since the 2006 census.

• Western Australia's population grew at the fastest rate in the nation, jumping by 14% in five years, while Queensland's grew by 11%.
• The states that recorded the lowest population growth were Tasmania, South Australia and New South Wales.

• Darwin and Canberra are the highest earning capitals, typically taking in over $93,000 per household.
• There are good returns to be found in rental property with median rental payments up by 50% between 2006 and 2011.

• The proportion of people living in detached houses has fallen by 1%, with a shift towards more people living in units and townhouses.
• Almost one in four Australians was born overseas, while 43.1 per cent of people have at least one parent who migrated here.
• Half of prospective home buyers are not willing to buy further than 10km from their ideal location and won't sacrifice outdoor space and privacy in order to enter the market.

Source: ABS 2011 Census of Population and Housing & Housing Affordability Sentiment Index.