Property sale rates bouncing back and what does that mean for homebuyers?

hand holding phone with buildings and property coming out showing a booming housing market and home loans search

Coming off all-time property price highs and months of interest rate hikes from the Reserve Bank of Australia, it’s no surprise that talk of housing market cooldown has started to warm up. 

After seeming to slow down, auction clearance rates have turned back up. With week to week auction results shifting, it can be hard to tell whether what we’ve seen in the last few weeks is representative of a new direction or simply a continual fluctuation.

What’s happening in the housing market?

Reporting from CoreLogic shows that the auction clearance rate (combined across Australia) has recently risen above 60% for the first time since June. While the volume of auctions were down on last year by 12%, activity was up since the week prior - the quietest week for auctions since June.

The clearance rate for capital cities was highest in Adelaide, where it hit 71.6%, bringing up the national average. The lowest rate was in Brisbane, sitting at a preliminary level of 40.7%, excluding Tasmania where only one auction took place (and was successful, for the record). 

While the clearance rate for auctions is considerably lower than it was a year ago, the highs and lows tend to repeat in a fairly consistent pattern. What the past few years have seen, with skyrocketing property prices, is higher peaks and valleys in this same pattern.

A high withdrawal rate continues to drag down clearance rates, with houses coming off the market before they can sell. Perhaps part of this reflects on expectations set too high, with property prices having dropped overall. Owners are still trying to cash in on the sky-high price-tags of 2021 in a 2022 world, and it’s leading to a lot of homes withdrawn before they reach auction - over 25% in Sydney.

What does more auction activity mean for me?

All of these figures can get a little overwhelming - what does it actually mean when it comes to your position in the market? 

Well, if you’re looking to buy, you’re in an interesting position. Buyer sentiment has been weak, speaking generally, but lessened property prices and lower auction turnouts could present a window of opportunity to you if you’re shopping for a new home or investment.

Though you’re entering into a market where the rates have continually raised for the past few months, some lenders have even brought down their fixed rate loans to keep you locked in through tumultuous times.

If you’re looking to sell, there may be some other factors at play than you initially expected. You’ll need to consider lower auction turnouts and perhaps bring down your expectations on the price you were anticipating. Otherwise, you could find yourself stuck in limbo on the market for quite some time.

The recent uptick in clearance rates could be signalling that we aren’t quite through with the housing boom - but far more likely, it’s a part of the kinds of ebbs and flows that tend to occur in the property cycle.

If you’re looking to step into the housing market, check out our home loans hub for more information.

Home loan comparisons on Mozo

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Last updated 18 June 2024 Important disclosures and comparison rate warning*
  • Unloan Variable

    • Owner Occupier
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    5.99 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    5.90 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $2,995
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    Built by CommBank, the Unloan is the first home loan with an increasing discount (conditions apply) for borrowers. No application or banking fees. No monthly account keeping or early exit fees. Apply online in minutes.

  • Basic Home Loan

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    Variable
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    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
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    Enjoy a low rate home loan with $0 application fee and $0 ongoing fees. Flexibility to split your loan and set different repayment types. Fee free redraw from your loan using online banking. Flexible ways to repay. 40% Deposit required.

  • Unloan Variable

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    5.99 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    5.90 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $2,995
    Go to site

    Built by CommBank, the Unloan is the first home loan with an increasing discount (conditions apply) for borrowers. No application or banking fees. No monthly account keeping or early exit fees. Apply online in minutes.

  • Discount Variable Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR<70%
    Interest rate
    5.99 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.01 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $2,995
    Go to site

    A low rate home loan for owner-occupiers packed with great features including unlimited extra repayments, free online redraw, no application or monthly admin fees. Rate will vary depending on LVR. Winner of a Mozo Experts Choice 2024 Low Cost Home Loan Award^

  • Variable Home Loan 90

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    • LVR <90%
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    6.04 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.06 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,011
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    Affordable home loan rate for buyers or refinancers. No monthly or ongoing fees. Option to add an offset for 0.10%. Access to savings with unlimited redraws available. Minimum 10% deposit required.

  • Fixed Rate Loan

    • Owner Occupier
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    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    6.09 % p.a.
    Fixed 3 years
    Comparison rate
    6.15 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,027

    Additional repayments of up to $10K per fixed year. Interest rate discounts available. Waiver of $499 application fee when combined with an Orange Advantage Home Loan.

  • The Better Home Loan Special Offer

    • Owner Occupier
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    6.14 % p.a.
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    6.14 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
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    Enjoy a variable rate home loan with a bunch of features from Police Credit Union. Make extra repayments at any time without penalty. No monthly, annual or upfront fees. Free online redraw. Minimum 20% deposit. Qualifying criteria applies. Minimum loan amount is 200K. For new customers only. Mozo Experts Choice Home Lender Credit Union of the Year 2023.

  • Basic Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR<60%
    • Principal & Interest
    Interest rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.16 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
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    Enjoy a low rate home loan with $0 application fee and $0 ongoing fees. Flexibility to split your loan and set different repayment types. Fee free redraw from your loan using online banking. Flexible ways to repay. 40% Deposit required.

  • Mortgage Simplifier

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    • Owner Occupier
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    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.17 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043

    Get a competitive variable rate with ING’s Mortgage Simplifier. Free extra repayments, no monthly or annual fees. Freedom to make free extra repayments or redraws.

  • Offset Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR<60%
    • Principal & Interest
    Interest rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.39 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
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    Ability to open up to 10 offset accounts per loan account. Fast online application. Linked Debit Mastercard® with fee-free access at ATMs across Australia. Package a credit card with your home loan and the annual card fee will be waived (T&Cs apply). 40% deposit required.

  • Basic Home Loan

    • Fixed
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    • LVR<70%
    Interest rate
    6.25 % p.a.
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    6.20 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,079
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    No upfront or ongoing fees. Free extra repayments and redraw facility. Option to earn Qantas points. Min 30% deposit required. Borrow up to $750,000.

  • Fixed Rate

    • Owner Occupier
    • Principal & Interest
    • <80% LVR
    Interest rate
    6.59 % p.a.
    Fixed 3 years
    Comparison rate
    7.06 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,190

    Enjoy up to $3000 cashback for eligible first home buyers and $2000 cashback for refinancers on eligible home loans with the ANZ Fixed Rate Home Loan. Get the security of repayment certainty with a competitive locked in rate. No ongoing fees to pay. Offset account on 1-year fixed loans ($10/month fee applies). Interest-only payments allowed.

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* WARNING: This comparison rate applies only to the example or examples given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. The comparison rate displayed is for a secured loan with monthly principal and interest repayments for $150,000 over 25 years.

** Initial monthly repayment figures are estimates only, based on the advertised rate. You can change the loan amount and term in the input boxes at the top of this table. Rates, fees and charges and therefore the total cost of the loan may vary depending on your loan amount, loan term, and credit history. Actual repayments will depend on your individual circumstances and interest rate changes.

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards

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