CoreLogic’s national home value index has recorded its fastest rate of appreciation in over 30 years. National home values rose a further 2.8% in March, the highest monthly rise the research firm has recorded since 1988.

Each of the capital cities saw their values pick up by at least 1.4%, with Sydney leading with a monthly rise of 3.7%. Hobart was the runner-up with growth of 3.3% in March, followed by Canberra at 2.8%, and Melbourne and Brisbane equal on 2.4%.

According to CoreLogic, Sydney and Melbourne have repositioned themselves as growth leaders following several months of trailing behind the smaller capitals and the regional markets.

For the first time in 12 months, growth in capital city housing values outpaced the regional markets, with the combined capital cities index rising 2.8% in March compared with 2.5% for the combined regions. But the regions still lead on annual price growth.

“Housing values in regional areas are 11.4% higher over the past year, demonstrating the earlier stronger growth trend,” says CoreLogic’s research director Tim Lawless. “Capital city values are now 4.8% higher on an annual basis with the acceleration in growth evident in March.”

In terms of the quarterly data, Sydney achieved another all-time high, with growth hitting 6.7% over the first quarter of the year – the strongest uplift since mid-2015. But it was Hobart that outpaced the crowd with quarterly growth at 7.6%. Canberra rose 6.0%, followed by Darwin at 5.4% and Perth at 5%.