Where is the market heading?
In vast contrast to last weekend’s sweltering conditions, the temperature on Saturday hovered around 15 degrees for most of the day with heavy showers and intermittent squalls … but that’s Melbourne!
What was the same, surprisingly, was the number of buyers out at opens, braving the weather and checking out the stream of new properties open for inspection.
There was also a spattering of auctions across inner Melbourne. The five key councils (Boroondara, Stonnington, Glen Eira, Port Phillip and Bayside) saw 20 reported auction results. Collectively the suburbs within these councils cleared 70%. Interestingly, all but two sales were under $2million and the two that were over that figure passed in.
Such few results really don’t provide an indication on market direction. We are more likely to get a better feel after the auctions on Saturday 23rd February, where there should be more volume.
A lot of time has been spent worrying about whether the Banking Royal Commission Report would further impact market conditions. Immediate downward changes to the market were seen at the commencement of the enquiry, with banks tightening lending criteria, introducing new checks and measures before making funds available and restricting interest only/investment loans. This, however, has been done and the market has adjusted accordingly.
Among the recommendations there was much focus on changing the rules regarding mortgage broker remuneration. We believe good mortgage brokers play an important role in the property market. They are often able to assist small business owner buyers into the market, taking the time to consider their needs and explore the plethora of options available from all banks and financial organisations to find the right package. Many are small business owners themselves. Whether this will impact the market further, only time will tell.
As quickly as the market has started, it will soon be school holidays and Easter and the new stock will dry up again. With ‘Labour Day’ long weekend looming, some agents have mentioned longer campaigns to ensure buyers absent over that weekend have time to view properties before they are auctioned. This may also be a strategy to try and sell a few homes before auction if they feel there may be only one standout buyer.
- Renovated single fronter with OSP on approx. 190sqm, Prahran – circa $1.55m
- Pretty period home on large land, Hawthorn – $5.5m-6m
- Single level Victorian with large courtyard, Hawthorn – circa mid $1m
- 3 bed single fronter with 2 bath, 2 OSP, Kew – circa $1.7m
- Family home on approx 579sqm, Malvern – circa early $2m