No market let-up before Christmas

Record housing market activity is set to keep brokers busy in the run up to Christmas, according to a leading property economist.

As many Australians begin to wind down at work before the holidays, those in real estate are set for a busy couple of weeks.

 Dr Andrew Wilson, senior economist at Australian Property Monitors (APM), said an unprecedented swell in activity was expected before things quietened down over the Christmas and New Year break.

“We have never seen a bigger surge in pre-Christmas listings in both Sydney and Melbourne than we are seeing currently. The supply side of the market is as strong as it’s ever been,” he said.

According to Dr Wilson, the market wouldn't begin to taper off for the holidays until just days before Christmas.

“We have 120 properties set for auction in Sydney on 21 December, just four days before we all sit down for our Christmas dinner, so maybe there will be some extra special presents for some people in terms of a new house,” he said.

“Last year, there were around about 50 properties in the final weekend, so we will have more than double that in Sydney this year,” he added.
Sellers are looking to get their properties onto the market now to take advantage of current market conditions.

“There is a sense from the market that now is the time. [Many are thinking] ‘Let’s take advantage of the strongest market conditions since 2009/2010' because perhaps there is still a bit of wariness about the direction of the market next year,” said Dr Wilson.

He added that with this increased activity, it would be very interesting to see whether current record high clearance rates would continue.

“It may signal the peak of the market because I don’t think we have a never-ending supply of buyers in Sydney and Melbourne,” Dr Wilson said.

“There are already some signs that the Melbourne market is just starting to moderate, and maybe even Sydney as well, but that’s no surprise given thousands of properties are being put up for auction over the final two weekends of the year.”

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