Property listings in Melbourne skyrocket as restrictions ease

The unwinding of restrictions in Victoria has given a boost to the real estate market, with research firm CoreLogic recording a wave of activity from sellers in the state’s capital.

Since property agents were given the green light to hold onsite inspections, the number of new listings in Melbourne has swelled from 1,606 to 6,974 — an increase of around 330%.

“The result is likely due to months of pent-up decisions to sell from vendors, and reflects how the real estate transaction process has remained tied to physical inspections,” said CoreLogic head of research Australia, Eliza Owen.

According to the data, the volume of new listings in Melbourne topped all other capital cities in the four weeks to 18 October, bringing total advertised stock in Melbourne to more than 21,000 properties.

There was an increase in new listings in 39 of 40 SA3 regions in Melbourne, with Macedon Ranges the sole underperformer. The areas with the greatest recovery of volumes were Wyndham (314), Melbourne City (273) and the Whittlesea-Wallan region (256).

While the amount of new listings could point to a potential market rebound, Owen doesn’t rule out the possibility that distressed sales are behind the uptick.

“A significant increase in new stock across Melbourne can mean different things for the state of the market. ‘Forced’ selling was a possibility from the pandemic, as significant job losses across Victoria may have limited the ability of some households to keep paying their mortgage,” she said.

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While it will take some time to get an accurate read on buyer sentiment, due to the time it takes before a listed property is transacted, there are certainly signs that conditions in the market are improving.

“New stock added to the market increased by around 5,370 properties, but the change in total stock was only 4,790. This suggests at least some stock on market has been absorbed over the past four weeks,” said Owen.

“In the week ending 18th of October, the final auction clearance rate of 60.2% across Melbourne, was achieved alongside the highest volume of auctions seen in two months. Over the past month, the rate of decline across Melbourne dwelling values has also eased.”

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