But houses in Melbourne's established inner northeast and southeast are only coming on to the market every 15 years, according to property research firm RP Data.
Burnside Heights and Derrimut have the city's lowest average hold period, two years.
Administrative manager Gloria Darmanin paid $292,000 for a three-bedroom house-and-land package in Burnside Heights in September, 2008. Last week she sold for $408,000 and is building a larger home in Mernda.
"Being a single person you can only go to where you can buy, and that area was affordable for me," Ms Darmanin said. "The whole idea was to get started and get some capital growth."
Barry Plant group director James Hatzimoisis said first-homebuyers were hauling themselves up Melbourne's steep property ladder via outlying housing estates.
"For most first-homeowners you are not buying what you love, you are buying what you can afford," Mr Hatzimoisis said. "But now a lot of people out there are in a position to upgrade."
Houses in Melbourne's stepping-stone suburbs have an average median of $424,395. The median for Melbourne's most tightly held areas is more than double that at $892,275.
Houses in Ivanhoe East - median $1,293,750 - are the least traded, coming on the market only every 16 years on average.
Sonya and Ewen Kilpatrick bought into Hardy Tce in Ivanhoe East in 1995 and have no plans to move. "It's a very quiet place with not much traffic and it's a lovely green area," Mrs Kilpatrick said. "We know everyone in our immediate vicinity and very few are thinking of moving, even though they are coming into that time of life when most people start to think about downsizing."
Fletchers director said it came as no surprise that Ivanhoe East topped the list. "Ivanhoe East and next door in Eaglemont are really magic areas," he said.
Only one of the top 10 most tightly held suburbs has a median below the city average. Coldstream, in the outer east, has an average hold period of 15 years, putting it on par with he million-dollar suburb Caulfield.
Coldstream IGA store manager Shane Currie said: "It's the gateway to the Yarra Valley and it's got that mix of being close to the country and close to Melbourne."
Source: The Herald Sun