Despite distractions over the long weekend reducing auction numbers, Sydney and Melbourne both posted solid results.
According to Australian Property Monitors (APM), 279 homes were listed to go under the hammer in Sydney, which was below the 378 auctioned over the same weekend last year.
Sydney recorded a clearance rate of 78.5 per cent at the weekend, which was the third consecutive weekend below 80 per cent following 10 consecutive weekends with clearance rates at or above 80 per cent.
According to senior economist at APM Dr Andrew Wilson, there are a number of indicators pointing to a softening housing market.
“House price growth in Sydney while still strong was markedly lower over the March quarter than that recorded over the December quarter last year, and the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) home loan data shows a weakening of owner-occupier finance approvals for home purchases in New South Wales,” Dr Wilson said.
Melbourne recorded its lowest auction clearance rate of the season so far as the market continues to indicate a general moderation of buyer activity, according to Dr Wilson.
“Saturday’s year-low clearance rate of just 68 per cent confirms the recent trend of falling buyer activity in the Melbourne market, with clearance rates clearly declining since the Labour Day holiday weekend in early March," he said.
“Other indicators also reflect a softening in housing market activity over recent months with house price growth in Melbourne, while still solid, markedly lower over the March quarter than that recorded over the December quarter last year.”
Next weekend both auction markets will be fully up and running again after the holiday breaks with nearly 750 properties set to be auctioned in Melbourne, and 600 in Sydney.