February property bounce: Listings and auction sales increase

Aerial shot of houses.

While sales took a hit last year as the pandemic forced buyers and sellers alike to curb their plans, 2021 has brought with it some promising signs of a turnaround, including a material rise in new listings.

Over the week ending February 7, total new listings for capital city homes rose 11.5 per cent compared to the previous week, according to research from My Housing Market.

Melbourne recorded the greatest increase in newly advertised stock (28.1 per cent), followed by Sydney (15.1 per cent), Adelaide (11.5 per cent) and Brisbane (10.2 per cent).

In Perth, however, the number of new listings plummeted by 36.6 per cent over the week, reflecting the impact of a hard lockdown after a quarantine hotel worker was found to have contracted the UK variant of the virus.

Nonetheless, total new listings across Australia are currently 7.2 per cent higher than they were over the same period in 2020.

“Newly advertised listing numbers can be expected to continue to surge over coming weeks and track higher than last year’s results at the same time - particularly as the autumn home auction season gathers pace,” said chief economist at Archistar, Andrew Wilson.

“More listings will be good news for buyers offered more choices – but can expect to pay higher prices in a hot market.”

Auction results improve across capitals

Auction markets also received a jolt last week, with property research firm CoreLogic recording a weighted average preliminary clearance rate of more than 80% across capital city markets.

A total of 1,287 capital city homes went under the hammer, with preliminary clearance rates coming in at 83.8 per cent. This is a tad higher than the previous week, which returned a 81.1 per cent preliminary result - later revised down to 77.2 per cent.

Sydney and Melbourne posted clearance rates of 89.1 per cent and 80.8 per cent, respectively. Among the smaller markets, Canberra returned a preliminary clearance rate of 92.7 per cent across 59 auctions.

“Every capital city recorded a clearance rate above 70% as volumes continued to surge higher after the festive period slowdown,” the property research firm said in its early analysis.

“Such strong auction results signal further upwards pressure on housing prices amidst extremely tight advertised supply levels and above average buyer demand.”

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