Market big chill blows over
THERE is just one month of winter to go. And the traditional cold-shoulder of the market doesn’t appear to have happened. Certainly the number of properties on the market has fallen dramatically — 13.2 per cent — since the same time last year. But new listings have been relatively stable, up or down about 1 per cent on and off for the past few weeks, according to RP Data statistics.
The number of weekend auctions appeared to bottom out around 400 in late June and has been, for the most part, rising steadily since.
Numbers look likely to sit around a healthy 600 for the rest of the winter season.
Clearance rates have struggled a little of late, but last weekend’s 67.7 per cent is a solid step back towards the 70 per cent-plus mark recorded in recent months.
And it is still a good clearance rate. Home sellers this year are far better off than at the same time last year when just 51.3 per cent of homes taken to auction sold, according to RP Data. And in further good news, RP Data suggests signs are pointing to Melbourne homes gaining as much as 2.5 per cent in value over July.
Not that an improvement in values should come as a surprise, according to Wakelin Property Advisory director Monique Wakelin.
‘‘It’s not unusual to see prices firm in winter, because of a lack of stock,’’ Ms Wakelin said.
Add to all of this the recent news from the Real Estate Institute of Victoria and RP Data that Melbourne’s market could return to peak prices by the end of 2013, and there’s a lot of interest in what will happen as the market picks up speed going into spring — and possibly even more interest in the opening for 2014.
‘‘I reckon this year it’s going to start late and finish very late and it will spill over into 2014,’’ Ms Wakelin said.
‘‘Depending on the election mood, we could well see a considerably stronger market in 2014.’’
But not everyone will have to wait until 2014, or even spring to see improvements in results.
A series of impressive results recorded on The Block Skyhigh last weekend saw each of the luxury apartments’ reserve prices topped by a minimum of $242,000 and in the case of the program winners, South Australian twins Alisa and Lysandra, a whopping $295,000. The Block wasn’t the only place to see a good result under the hammer. A twobedroom period house at 27 Jackson St, Northcote (pictured), sold at $100,000 over its $840,000 reserve when auctioned by Hocking Stuart Northcote on the same day.