Sydney recorded its lowest auction clearance rate for 5 months at the weekend under the strain of a mountain of pre-Xmas listings. The 78.2 percent result was nonetheless a solid result for sellers particularly given the unprecedented number of auctions conducted at the weekend. 835 properties were listed to go under the hammer which is well ahead of the 628 listed over the same weekend last year.
Sydney’s pre-Xmas rush to the market by sellers is set to continue right to the end of the year with next Saturday set to break the all-time record for auctions – set just two weekends ago. And next weekend’s 950 auctions will be followed now by an extraordinary 250 properties scheduled to be auctioned just 4 days before Xmas Day.
The mad end of year rush to market clearly indicates the enthusiasm of sellers to take advantage of Sydney’s strongest-ever spring auction selling season with the market unlikely to be fully focussed again until mid-February and into March next year after the long holiday pause.
Despite a waning in the overall Sydney clearance rate this weekend strong results were nonetheless recorded by a number of suburban regions. The top performer was the north west with a clearance rate of 92.3 percent. This was followed by the lower north with 86.3 percent, the inner west with 84.5 percent, the south with 84.4 percent and the city and east with a clearance rate of 80 percent.
Notable auction sales reported at the weekend on the lower north shore included a 4 bedroom home at 11 Oswald Street Mosman sold by Belle Property Neutral Bay for $2,500,000, a 5 bedroom house at 30 Glover Street North Willoughby sold for $2,200,000 by McGrath, another 5 bedroom home at 16 McClelland St Willoughby East sold for $1,980,000 also by McGrath and a 3 bedroom house at 120 Riverview Street Riverview sold by Riverview Realty for $1,250,000.
On the upper north shore a 5 bedroom house at 43 Kuppa Road Ryde sold by Tracy Yap Realty for $2,040,000, a 4 bedroom home at 9 Sunden Way North Epping sold for $2,010,000 by Better Homes Realty, a 4 bedroom house at 1 Melkin End Road Gordon sold by McGrath for $1,975,000 and another 4 bedroom house at 34 Albert Road Beecroft sold for 1825000 also by McGrath.
In Sydney’s inner west a 5 bedroom home at 14 Augusta Street Strathfield sold by Richard Matthews Real Estate, for $2,010,000 a 4 bedroom house at 51 Waterview Street Balmain sold for $1,950,000 by Ray White Balmain, another 4 bedroom house at 42 Austin Avenue Croydon sold by Raine and Horne Burwood for $1,699,000 and a 3 bedroom home at 60 First Avenue Rodd Point sold for $1,610,000 by Devine Real Estate.
Notable unit sales at the weekend included a 3 bedroom unit at 1101/8-34 Neild Avenue Rushcutters Bay sold by BresicWhitney Glebe for $1,550,000, another 3 bedroom unit at 18/48-52 Ewos Parade Cronulla sold for $1,250,000 by Richardson and Wrench Cronulla, a 3 bedroom unit at 2a/122-130 Clareville Avenue Sandringham sold by Peter James Realty for $1,230,000 and another 3 bedroom unit at 1801/2a Help Street Chatswood sold for $1,195,000 by First National Regency Realty.
The most expensive property reported sold at auction at the weekend was a 4 bedroom home at 39 The Promenade Sans Souci sold by Raine and Horne Sans Souci for $3,000,000. The most affordable property reported sold at the weekend was a 3 bedroom home at 22 Cutler Drive Wyong sold by Capital One Wyong for $211,000.
Although the Sydney housing market is having its best spring auction selling season on record, buyer activity can be expected to moderate over 2014, particularly if local economic activity continues to decline. The Reserve Bank as expected has decided to leave interest rates on hold until its next meeting in February however weak GDP numbers released last week increase the likelihood of a cut in rates early next year.
But this year the Sydney auction market is definitely going out with a bang not a whimper.
Dr Andrew Wilson is Senior Economist for Australian Property Monitors Twitter@DocAndrewWilson
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