With the exception of Christopher Joye whose 2020 property forecasts have been near perfect, the major banks and most other financial institutions should be a little red-faced about their dire commentary regarding how the market would play out. During October the auction clearance rate steadily rose to nearly 60% to close out the month. The volume of property trading is comparable to the corresponding period in 2019 and overall property market conditions are incredibly good in the midst of this strange year and Australia’s first recession in 30 years. Across our local markets, we continued to see a steady stream of buyer demand and interest at each price point. Buyers are showing caution and restraint for compromised property assets yet they continued to move aggressively to secure blue-chip and prestige property assets. October finished in such a solid position that Head of SQM Research, Louis Christopher, noted that “any dark scenario of a house price crash has now been averted”.

Around the country, every capital city with the exception of Melbourne recorded a price increase during October, though Melbourne did show promising signs as restrictions eased late in the month and a flood of property entered the market. Like many, we’ve been surprised at the strength of the prestige sector right across Sydney, with record prices recorded in the East, North, Northern Beaches and Inner West. Danny Cobden smashed the Balmain suburb record during the month, selling the heritage waterfront residence at 1 Campbell Lane. Not only was the price extraordinary being in the $11m range but the property attracted a wide array of interest and sold in just 10 days. We backed this sale up quickly with another record result for the exceptional warehouse conversion at 106 Beattie Street, Balmain. This property was marketed exclusively through our database, attracting five genuinely interested parties and selling in just 13 days north of $6m.

It wasn’t just prestige sales that moved quickly either, with a host of more accessible quality property also finding strong buyer interest. Speaking with buyers around the market, it’s clear that there is a strong appetite for additional space. COVID put the spotlight on our living conditions, working from home and whether we’re even in the ideal property. As a result, a large portion of the buyer pool is intent on improving their current residential status. During the month our Marrickville office headed up by Jim Nikolopoulos delivered its best results to date with a 90% auction clearance rate, four off-market transactions, six additional sales and 13 active campaigns. Our Lane Cove office managed by Peter Gordon also recorded steady improvement in buyer numbers at open homes as it gains more traction in this new region. Our Balmain, Annandale and Drummoyne offices continued to leverage our combined database to help more buyers access a wider pool of property. It’s not uncommon for buyers to be looking at several properties in each region at the moment as we’re seeing more people expand their search zones.

As we close out October and move into November, we’re now confident that the market will finish in remarkable fashion given what’s occurred this year. The low-interest-rate environment, Government stimulus and loan deferrals have underpinned property and as the national economy opens up further, 2021 could end up being a growth year for property.

Posted in Uncategorized on 2nd November, 2020