Clearance rates are starting to fall as Australia's property market wakes from its summer slumber

JIM SMITH/AFP/Getty Images
  • After the summer lull, a flood of properties is hitting the market in Australia.
  • Clearance rates sagged to 62% nationally with the best performances in Melbourne and Adelaide.
  • Sydney was below 60% and Brisbane and Perth both saw less than half of the properties on auction find a buyer.

As Australia’s real estate industry starts to wake from its summer slumber, seeing the number of properties available for sale increase, auction clearance rates are starting to slide again.

According to CoreLogic, a final clearance rate of 62% was recorded across Australia’s capitals last week, down from 72.8% one week earlier.

Reflecting softer conditions in the southeastern capitals, it was also below the 68.8% level recorded in the same corresponding week a year earlier.

Source: CoreLogic

The decline coincided with a noticeable pickup in the number of houses that went under the hammer, near tripling to 790 from 276 in the final week of January.

This table shows how individual capital city markets fared during the week.

Source: CoreLogic

“The two strongest auction markets in terms of clearance rate last week were Melbourne and Adelaide, with both cities recording a 70.2% rate of clearance,” CoreLogic said.

“[This was] followed by Canberra and Sydney, while Brisbane, Perth and Tasmania all recorded clearance rates at or below 50%.”

In Sydney and Melbourne, the largest auction markets nationwide, many of the trends seen in late 2017 are now appear to be reasserting themselves once again: Melbourne continues to outperform Sydney with both cities recording lower clearance rates than a year ago.

“It is expected that auction volumes will returned to normal levels in the coming weeks and a true reading of auction market conditions can be established,” CoreLogic says.

That process continues this week with the group currently tracking 1,371 auctions across the capitals, an increase of 74%.

For Sydney, 481 auctions scheduled to take place, more than double the volume of auctions held last week. Across Melbourne, 575 properties look set to go under the hammer, up from 292 week earlier.

Volumes will also lift in all other capitals aside from Adelaide.

“Point Cook in Victoria is the busiest suburb for auctions this week, with 12 homes set to go under the hammer, followed by Dee Why in New South Wales with 11,” says CoreLogic.

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