The Melbourne residential real estate market has got off to an encouraging start.

Last weekend’s Melbourne auction result were the strongest in five years.

The weekend auction market has started 2016 with encouraging results, indicating a continuation of the solid sellers’ market evident over the latter part of last year.

Although auction numbers are relatively small at this time of the year, Saturday’s results are nonetheless positive for both sellers and buyers in Melbourne.

Saturday’s clearance rate of 74.1 per cent was marginally higher than the 68.9 per cent recorded on December 19, which concluded the 2015 market, and also above the 72.7 per cent recorded during the same weekend in 2015.

This weekend’s result was also the highest January Saturday clearance rate recorded in Melbourne since the strong market conditions of 2010 – five years ago.

At the weekend, 98 auctions were listed, which was well above the 57 auctions recorded during the same weekend in 2015.

This continues the trend evident over December, with sharply higher auction numbers reflecting continued seller confidence in the local gavel sale

In total, 3558 weekend auctions were listed in December compared with 3253 in December 2014.

Although early in the 2016 auction season, Saturday’s results are a clear indication that robust results can be expected in the Melbourne market, similar to those recorded over the latter part of 2015.

The Melbourne weekend auction market tracked backwards over 2015, following a surge in activity over autumn.

The clearance rate peaked at nearly 85 per cent in May, but finished the year steady at just under 70 per cent.

The market, however, remained clearly in favour of sellers, with all regions and price ranges continuing to find buyers.

Unsurprisingly, lower clearance rates translated into a decrease in the level of house price growth.

Melbourne prices retreated from the boom-time 6 per cent increase recorded over the June quarter to a more sustainable 1.8 per cent rise recorded over the December quarter.

The Melbourne property market is set to begin 2016 confidently, with clearance rates and prices growth likely to match those reported at the end of 2015.

An improving local economy has been a significant factor in prices growth over the past year and will continue to underpin solid local market confidence.

Results from the weekend’s relatively low auction numbers provide an early insight into market dynamics.

However, as auction activity rises over coming weekends, a clearer view of the market will be revealed.

Next weekend just over 200 auctions will be conducted in Melbourne, providing a broader representation of regions and price ranges than this weekend’s offerings.

But clearly, Saturday was a good start to the year for a still-solid Melbourne weekend home auction market.

Check Domain for:  Full list of weekend auction results

Want more of this type of information?

Andrew Wilson


Dr Andrew Wilson is Australia’s leading housing market expert. As senior economist for Fairfax-owned Domain Group, Dr Wilson is one of the nation’s most respected real estate analysts and Australia’s highest profile housing market commentator. Visit his blog at Domain

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