Western Australia’s property market has delivered a mixed result over the September quarter, according to the latest data from the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA).
REIWA president David Airey said there were three clear trends to be found among the data.
“The most noticeable trends are the drop in sales turnover, strong but declining first home buyer activity, and the narrowing of most sales into a particular price range,” Mr Airey said.
The REIWA analysis showed the number of metropolitan sales dropped away by around six per cent in the quarter, with 10 of its 13 weeks being below average for turnover this year.
“In fact, the more affordable north east and south east corridors in metropolitan Perth were the only sub-regions to show an increase in activity,” Mr Airey said.
“The sales of units and apartments remained steady across the board, but house sales dropped away.
First home buyers were very active at the more affordable end of the market and in combination with softening activity at the upper end, Perth’s median house price came down from $525,000 in June to $505,000, but is expected to lift to $510,000 once all settlements are in.
Mr Airey said there was evidence to suggest the first home buyer activity is seeing some multiple bidding on more affordable homes and resulting in many sale prices that are above the asking price.
The Office of State Revenue reported the median purchase price for first home buyers across WA for both August and September was $435,000, up from $400,000 on the same time last year.
“Units, apartments and villas saw a very modest drop in median price across the state, dipping by $4,000 in both the city and the country to $421,000 and $306,000 respectively. But the broader theme from the quarter was the narrowing of the overall buying range,” Mr Airey said.
“The distribution of house sales in Perth by price range reveals the compressed nature of the market. Some 75 per cent of turnover occurred within the band of $350,000 to $800,000, which compares to 71 per cent of turnover in the same bracket this time last year,” he said.
The stock of listings for Perth dropped by one per cent to 8,700 properties, but Mr Airey said this was well down - by 16 per cent - on last year. The tight supply was also reflected in the average number of selling days, dipping by just one day to 48.