The market continued to shift gears during September as pressure on property prices eased following an increased volume of listings which diluted the buying pool.


Tighter lending policies on investors also began to have an impact. The auction clearance rate continued to fluctuate, hovering in the upper 60% range which was last seen in 2015.

We’re also seeing what can only be called a hangover from boom time selling conditions, with a good portion of people still under the impression that the Sydney property market is firing and prices are still growing quickly. This simply isn’t the case. What we’ve seen over the past month is fewer buyers at open homes, a challenging auction environment and buyers shying away from properties unless they represent good value.

Our property market is still strong and when you look around Australia, most regions would love to have the current Sydney dynamics. However, we can’t get too carried away in the belief that the boom is still in play. There has been an adjustment – we have seen it across all markets and buyers are aware of it. During the month there was no shortage of properties that didn’t sell at auction or sold under the price guide. This is something that hasn’t been seen for several years in Sydney.

Moreover, off-market sales have become increasingly challenging. When the market was firing we had great success with this method, with 9 out of 10 off-market sales successfully transacting. In the current selling environment, we believe that about 2 out of 10 off-market sales will now secure a premium outcome in a short timeframe. It is still possible but present conditions are more suitable to committed sellers aiming to engage committed buyers in the wider market.

Looking ahead, it appears likely that the current conditions will remain in play until the end of the year, with some market commentators suggesting that 2018 will see an even tougher climate. You can almost sense a changing of the real estate cycle and while there will always be examples of properties securing an astonishing price across the market, the overriding sentiment is far more cautious. No doubt we were all aware that conditions would shift at some point as they simply had too. When it does arrive though, it’s hard for many to accept the change, which always raises questions as to whether we will see a slow easing or something more dramatic. The good news is that all indications suggest there is underlying demand in the market with residential home loan approvals still healthy and a solid appetite to purchase property, so it would appear conditions will just balance out over a period of time.

The upside to this shift in market conditions is there are excellent buying opportunities available. During September we saw some of the best quality property enter the market that we have seen all year. For sellers, if your property is well presented and positioned to engage buyers you will still have a successful sale. For buyers, conditions are more balanced and you can negotiate on most properties. Generally speaking, the consensus is that present market conditions are actually an ideal property trading environment for all parties in the market right now.


This month’s signature performers:


46/100 Barcom Avenue, Darlinghurst | Undisclosed



31 Trouton Street, Balmain | Undisclosed



75 Salisbury Road, Stanmore | $1.7m




Posted in General, Monthly Market Wrap, Property on 28th September, 2017