Boom-time buyer momentum has returned in earnest to Sydney, with the auction market producing a remarkable result at the weekend, supercharged by lower interest rates and surging investors.
Sydney recorded its highest weekend clearance rate in more than a year and the second consecutive weekend spike since the Reserve Bank decided to cut interest rates to a record low 1.5 per cent a fortnight ago.
The 82.8 per cent result was higher than the 79.4 per cent recorded the previous weekend and above the 79.7 per cent recorded on the same weekend last year.
Relatively low auction numbers continue to contribute to high clearance rates, with strong competition among buyers for available properties. Although the 471 auctions listed on Saturday were higher than the previous weekend’s 394, numbers remained well below the 727 auctioned on the same weekend last year.
Regional results were remarkably consistent, with all areas sharing in the booming market.
The upper north shore recorded the highest clearance rate at 88.9 per cent and the highest sales at 48. This was followed by the lower north at 87.5 per cent, the south at 86.3 per cent, the northern beaches at 84.4 per cent, the central coast at 83.3 per cent, the north west at 81.8 per cent, the inner west at 81.1 per cent, Canterbury Bankstown at 79.3 per cent, the west at 78.3 per cent, the south west at 77.8 per cent and the city and east with a clearance rate of 77.1 per cent.
Notable sales reported at the weekend included:
- a six-bedroom home at 219 Edinburgh Road, Castlecrag sold for $3.65 million by Richardson and Wrench Castlecrag and Northbridge/Sotheby’s Realty;
- a three-bedroom home at 126 Windsor Street, Paddington sold for $3,405,000 by The Agency | Estate Agents;
- a six-bedroom home at 29b Ada Avenue, Wahroonga sold for $3,321,000 by Richardson and Wrench | St Ives Royal Greens;
- a five-bedroom home at 3 Dugald Road, Mosman sold for $3,205,500 by Raine and Horne Neutral Bay;
- a three-bedroom home at 13 Read Street, Bronte sold for $3 million by PhillipsPantzer Donnelley.
The most expensive property reported sold at auction was a four-bedroom home at 35 Bonnefin Road, Hunters Hill, which sold for $5.15 million by BresicWhitney Hunters Hill. The most affordable property reported sold was a one-bedroom unit at 5/6 Warialda Street, Kogarah, which sold for $400,000 by McGrath Brighton-Le-Sands.
Sydney recorded a median auction price of $1,020,500 on Saturday, which was below the $1,191,000 recorded the previous weekend. Saturday’s median was also 5.5 per cent lower than the $1,080,500 recorded on the same weekend last year. A total of $290.9 million was reported sold at auction in Sydney at the weekend.
Low auction numbers remain a challenge for property hungry Sydney buyers and are supporting higher clearance rates and driving fierce competition in most areas.
Auction numbers — although set to rise gradually over coming weekends into spring — will remain well below last year’s record-level boom-time listings, similar to the 2014 and 2013 markets at the same time.
Investors remain a key ingredient of a rising housing market, with latest Australian Bureau of Statistics residential lending data reporting another surge in activity over June for NSW. The prospect of a change to negative gearing has activated investors since May, with the June total of $6.6 billion the highest monthly result since June last year.