PHOTO: Investors are returning to the property market across Australia. (ABC News: John Gunn)

It’s a sunny Saturday morning in suburban Sydney and a nervous group of would-be buyers and onlookers watch as the price of a five bedroom brick house climbs higher and higher.

Half of the eight registered bidders are investors.

But in the end it’s owner-occupier Simon Isaacs who places the winning bid. A cool $1.5 million, about $300,000 over the reserve.

How does Mr Isaacs feel? “Really good, because in my head I thought ‘we are not going to get it,'” he said.

He was worried about being outbid by an investor.

“You hear people ask ‘how much could I rent this out for’ and you think ‘wow, we are a family and there is someone wanting to buy it to rent it out,'” he said.

Simon Isaacs had been worried about being outbid by an investor at auction. (ABC News: John Gunn )

Real estate agent at Ray White Sutherland Shire, Adam Crawley, said landlords are trickling back into the market and pushing up property prices as a result.

“Obviously they see the growth in house prices as a good way to build wealth,” he said.