The Sydney home auction market steamed into November last weekend at record pace despite an unprecedented surge in auction numbers for this time of the year.
Sydney recorded a boom-time 82.4 per cent clearance rate, which was well ahead of the previous weekend’s 78.9 per cent result and also above the 81.2 per cent recorded over the same weekend last year.
Despite the lift in last weekend’s clearance rate, the current four-weekend average clearance rate at 80.4 per cent remains below the 83.0 per cent recorded over the previous four-weekend period.
The inner west will again clearly host the greatest number of auctions this weekend with 164, followed by the upper north shore with 135, the city and east with 121, the south with 112, the lower north shore with 110, the west with 65, Canterbury Bankstown with 60, and the northern beaches with 50 auctions scheduled.
The most popular suburbs for auctions this weekend in Sydney are Mosman on the lower north shore and Maroubra in the city and east, each with 14 auctions listed. These are followed by Strathfield and Ashfield, both in the inner west and each with 13, Randwick in the city and east with 12, Ryde on the upper north shore with 11, and Castle Hill in the north west, Eastwood on the upper north shore and Merrylands in the west with 9 auctions scheduled this weekend.
Auction activity will continue to rise over the next six weekends, testing the market, with buyers spoiled for choice and sellers looking for a result before Christmas.
Continuing strong housing market activity in Sydney this spring has been significantly generated by low interest rates. This week the Reserve Bank predictably decided to leave interest rates at 2.5 per cent for the 15th consecutive month – the longest steady sequence since 2003.
With house price growth now moderating in most capitals within an overall flat economic environment, interest rates are set to remain on hold through to 2015. A continuing deterioration in the jobless rate, however, will increase the likelihood of a rate cut sooner rather than later in the New Year.
The latest jobless data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reports that the national unemployment rate remained fixed at 6.2 per cent over October – the highest level since March 2003. The New South Wales unemployment rate, however, fell over the month from 5.9 per cent to 5.7 per cent – the lowest of all the major states except Western Australia, at 5.2 per cent.
The Melbourne weekend auction market resumes this Saturday after last weekend’s break for the Melbourne Cup holiday long weekend.
A total of 957 homes are listed to go under the hammer in the metro area, which unsurprisingly is significantly higher than the 132 auctions conducted last weekend but similar to the same weekend last year, when 961 auctions were listed.
Despite relatively low auction numbers last weekend, the local market recorded a strong clearance rate of 80 per cent, which was ahead of the previous weekend’s 75.4 per cent and the 74.7 per cent recorded over the same weekend last year.
Melbourne’s four-weekend average clearance rate now stands at 76.4 per cent, compared to 78.8 per cent over the previous four-weekend period.
Melbourne’s inner east reported a perfect auction score last weekend with 12 homes selling from 12 reported listings for a 100 per cent auction clearance rate. Next best was the ever-popular outer east with 92 per cent and the highest reported sales at 23. This was followed by the north east with 85.7 per cent, the north with 83.3 per cent, the inner city with 72.7 per cent and the south east with 71.4 per cent.
Melbourne’s inner south will host the most number of auctions this weekend with 147, closely followed by the inner east with 143, the outer east with 140, the inner city with 138, the west with 133, the north east with 131, the north with 80 and the south east with 43.
The most popular suburb for auction listings this weekend in metro Melbourne is again Mount Waverley in the outer east, with 20 auctions scheduled. Next highest is Glen Waverley, also in the outer east with 16, Reservoir in the north east and St Kilda in the inner city each with 15, and South Yarra in the inner city, Mitcham in the outer east and Glen iris in the inner east with 13 auctions scheduled this weekend.
Solid auction activity in Melbourne this spring has been generated significantly by low interest rates.