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How best to advise your landlords on current auction activity in Sydney and Perth

29 October 2018 | 11 minute read
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There still remain some pockets where landlords can find auction success, in spite of new data showing that overall auction activity is beginning to lose ground.

The auction clearance rate around the combined capital cities has held over 50 per cent for units with a rate of 53.9 per cent, while houses have slipped under 50 per cent to 49.4 per cent, the latest Property Pulse report from CoreLogic indicated.
Nationally, this is the lowest level for spring since 2012.
For comparison, the same spring period this time last year saw 65.4 per cent of houses and 67.7 per cent of capital cities clearing auctions.

Looking at Sydney, auction clearance rates this spring have been trending under the capital city average, with 47.2 per cent of houses selling at auction and 50.1 per cent of units, which the Property Pulse noted is quite low compared to last year’s 61.8 per cent of houses and 68.7 per cent of units being sold.
Meanwhile, more severe figures can be seen in Perth’s clearance rates, with 30.8 per cent of houses and 13 per cent of units moving so far this spring.
While these numbers seem quite low, it is important to not be lost in the statistics across a capital city.


Speaking to RPM sister publication Smart Property Investment, auctioneer James Pratt of James Pratt Auctions explained that there were still some suburbs attracting a lot more attention, and as demand rises, price points are rising, too.
“For example, there’s a spot called McMahons Point… To give you an idea, the average sale price has almost doubled,” Mr Pratt said.
“Now that’s not meaning the house price has doubled, but what people are paying for the average house there has almost doubled in that area.
“Another reflection is obviously North Sydney, Cremorne, even parts of the Eastern Suburbs. Their auction rates, week in, week out, are closer to 60, 70 per cent.”
While auctioneer Tim Snell from Ray White does see the east coast of Australia experiencing challenges in the market at the moment, he also sees the Eastern Suburbs as a popular choice, as well as Manly and the Northern Beaches.
Mr Snell also identified some western suburbs as a good pick for investors.
“If you’re looking for opportunities to invest, it’s fair to say that the western suburbs — were talking about your Mt Druitt’s, your Colyton’s, your St Marys’ — theyre really the places where buyers certainly have a lot more choice and a lot more power,” Mr Snell said.
“Were in a stage now where theres still plenty of buyers out there, most properties will still have at an auction... one or two bidders on average at every auction, which means there is a buyer for every property in NSW; it just depends on whether the vendor is ready to accept the price change.”
Meanwhile, Perth’s low figures have tipped the balance of power to the buyers, as Mr Snell said a lot of agents are struggling to sell property.
“Its not necessarily a strong market, but its certainly not as and as the media has been portraying it to be. Its just a little bit harder,” the auctioneer added.
Regardless, there are still some good areas left for investors to find, Mr Snell said.

His Perth picks are all based around the centre of capital — East Perth in particular.
“Those kind of suburbs have a lot of personality, a little bit closer to the city [as it has] started to become a little bit more on-trend in that marketplace and the demand for those properties is still pretty cool,” Mr Snell said.

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