Australia's housing market is about to face its first big test of the Spring selling season

Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images
  • Australian auction clearance rates fell to the lowest level since December 2012 last week.
  • According to CoreLogic, auction volumes across the country will lift by a further 15% to the highest levels since Autumn.
  • Falling clearance rates suggests a mismatch between vendor and buyer price expectations still exists in many markets.

Australia’s housing market looks set to face its first big test of the Spring selling season with auction volumes set to hit the highest level since Autumn this weekend.

According to CoreLogic, they’ll lift by 15% to 2,277 with all markets except Brisbane and Hobart seeing volumes increase from one week earlier.

“Melbourne is set to be the busiest auction market this week with a total of 1,091 homes scheduled for auction, increasing on last week when 988 auctions were held across the city,” CoreLogic says.

“Volumes are also set to rise across Sydney with a total of 802 homes scheduled to go under the hammer, up on the 669 auctions held last week.”

Adelaide, Canberra and Perth will also see a lift in activity levels.

CoreLogic

Despite the increase in volumes across most capital city markets, the number of auctions nationwide will remain well below the 2,782 level seen in the same corresponding week a year ago, reflecting the deterioration in market conditions seen over the past 12 months.

On a more granular level, CoreLogic says Craigieburn and Reservoir, both suburbs of Melbourne, will be the busiest individual markets this week with 22 and 21 homes respectively set to go under the hammer.

Ensuring there’ll be more than a few eyes on the results this weekend, Corealogic said final clearance rates last week fell to the lowest level December 2012, dropping to just 51.8% on the back of renewed weakness in Melbourne and Sydney.

CoreLogic

“The two largest auction markets of Melbourne and Sydney both recorded a lower clearance rate week-on-week,” the group said.

“Melbourne returned a final clearance rate of 54.1%, down on the 60% over the previous week, while over half of the Sydney homes taken to auction last week failed to sell, returning a final clearance rate of 48.6%.”

CoreLogic

With volumes set to increase in both of these cities this weekend, there’s clearly a risk the national clearance rate could decline even further should reporting levels remain at similar levels.

A clear mismatch between vendor and buyer price expectations still exists in many markets, reflected in the reduction in national clearance rates and prices seen over the past 12 months.

NOW READ: Units are now selling for a loss at twice the rate of houses – and it may indicate investors are willing to take the hit

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