KIAMA remains the most expensive Illawarra area in which to buy property, despite falling land prices.
According to IRIS Research's Illawarra Real Estate Report, the median house price in the Kiama municipality was $560,000 in the year to June 2013, compared with $440,000 in Wollongong and $385,000 in Shellharbour.
Units in Kiama set buyers back $381,000 on average, compared with $347,000 in Wollongong and $325,000 in Shellharbour.
Land prices averaged $270,000 in Kiama, while blocks cost $255,000 in Shellharbour and $250,000 in Wollongong.
However, trends from 2012 to 2013 were not uniform across all property types.
Detached housing prices in Kiama rose just 1.3 per cent between the year to June 2012 and the year to June 2013, but units rose 9 per cent. Land prices dropped 6.9 per cent.
Kiama real estate agent Marnie Beauchamp said the low number of land sales would have contributed to a lower median price.
"Even though they're talking about median price, if you're selling a high volume, the average will still be higher," she said.
Fellow agent Robert Perea said land prices differed greatly depending on their proximity to a highway and whether or not properties had views.
"They're very individual here because Kiama's very much hills and dales, which makes some blocks a lot more valuable than others," he said.
Ms Beauchamp said the rise in unit prices was driven by the investment market.
"People can lock them up and go away and leave them - houses are more sold to locals or people relocating," she said.
Fellow agent Michelle Lay said units were more affordable and had a broader market, also including first home buyers and retirees who are downsizing.
But Ms Lay expected to see much larger growth in next year's figures.