According to CoreLogic’s Property Market Indicator Summary, there were 689 more properties put up for auction last week, up 43 per cent on the week before.
The milestone was passed following a “substantial rise” in auctions in the Sydney and Melbourne markets, with Melbourne seeing the most dwellings (1,103) up for auction.
However, despite the volume of auctions reaching the highest level so far this year, the preliminary clearance rate for the combined capital cities remained in the high 70s (77 per cent).
Sydney had the highest clearance rate (83.5 per cent), followed by Canberra (81.5 per cent) and Melbourne (76.7 per cent).
Although the preliminary combined capital city clearance rate was higher in this week than the same period last year, the number of auctions held was lower, with 2,347 auctions held over the same week last year, returning a 71.8 per cent clearance rate.
CoreLogic found that the top auction sale over the past week was for a five-bedroom property in Chatswood, NSW, which sold for $4.95 million.
The appetite for properties in Australian capital cities has been increasing recently, with CoreLogic previously finding that turnaround times for properties is decreasing.
For example, the average time on market for Melbourne dwellings dropped to a historic low of 29 days at the end of 2016.
Meanwhile, the typical Sydney dwelling sold after an average of 33 days in December 2016 compared to 39 days in December 2015.
Brisbane was the only city with a ‘days on market’ figure trending higher. While dwellings were taking an average of 43 days to sell at the end of 2015, the average rose to 57 at the end of 2016.
Speaking at the time, CoreLogic head analyst Cameron Kusher noted that the average number of days it takes to sell a residential property has been falling over recent months, which reflects an overall improvement in housing market conditions.
On average, it took 38 days to sell a home in December 2016 across Australia’s capital cities (down from a high of 50 days in August 2016). Four of the eight capital cities now have an average ‘days on market’ figure below 40 days, while most other capital cities are seeing this figure starting to trend lower.
Mr Kusher commented: “The average days on market figure provides valuable insights into the performance of the housing market by measuring the average difference between the date at which a property is listed for sale and the day at which it goes under contract.”
He added: “The days on market figures will be important to follow throughout 2017. After the current growth phase has run for more than four and a half years, we are still seeing a rapid rate of sale in Sydney and Melbourne.
“Low levels of stock available for sale and many willing purchasers continue to drive a rapid rate of sale in Sydney and Melbourne while the rate of sale is improving in most other capital cities.”
[Related: Land lot prices rise to record high]
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Annie Kane is the editor of The Adviser and Mortgage Business.
As well as writing about the Australian broking industry, the mortgage market, financial regulation, fintechs and the wider lending landscape – Annie is also the host of the Elite Broker and In Focus podcasts and The Adviser Live webcasts.