Clearance rates start “spring” back after winter lows

Signs of spring are becoming apparent with warmer weather on the horizon. Traditionally for our property markets, this time of year sees an increase in buying and selling activity.

It’s therefore not surprising that Sydney and Adelaide clearance rates picked up this week, even though Melbourne and Brisbane auction results remained fairly sluggish.

According to the Home Price Guide’s auction results, 207 out of 273 properties sold inSydney this weekend, producing a clearance rate of 73%, up by 7% from last Saturday.

The Adelaide auction market rebounded with vigour, resulting in the clearance rate more than doubling to a healthy 65%, with 13 out of 20 properties selling.

Meanwhile, Melbourne’s clearance rate dropped slightly from the previous week to 62%, after 165 out of 260 properties sold, while Brisbane once again came out as the weakest link with just 4 out of 16 properties selling to give a clearance rate of 21%.

Exactly what the traditionally busier spring months have in store for our property markets this year remains a bit of a mystery. The past 12 months have been anything but “normal”, with incessant talk from commentators of booms, bubbles, busts, affordability and interest rate uncertainty.

Add to this confusion the question of just who will end up running our country and how each parties policies might impact Australia’s housing markets and it’s understandable that many potential buyers, investors and sellers are waiting with bated breath to see what lies around the corner.

However, there are still a lot of underlying factors at play that should support our property markets; Australia boasts one of the healthiest economies in the developed world, our interest rates remain relatively low, we are in the midst of a population boom and there is a continuing critical undersupply of housing.

So will spring deliver its traditional robust price growth this time around? It’s difficult to say with any certainty. But one thing that’s apparent is a fairly significant increase in the volume of auctions, with each capital city showing a jump in stock this weekend apart from Brisbane and a whopping 660 auctions scheduled for next Saturday.

With more houses on the market at a time when there are fewer buyers around, this will mean the sellers’ markets we experienced earlier in the year may change to buyers’ markets.


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Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who help their clients grow, protect and pass on their wealth through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's once again been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and his opinions are regularly featured in the media. Visit

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