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Auction volumes remain subdued

Auction volumes continue to be on the lower side across capital cities, reflecting the effects of the ban on public auctions.

The number of auctions held across the combined capital cities rose to 590 in the week ending 3 May, according to CoreLogic. However, while this was up from the 431 scheduled for auction in the prior week, this was largely due to the week prior being impacted by the national ANZAC Day commemorations.

Data showed preliminary results returned a 59.6 per cent clearance rate last week, up from the 41.1 per cent clearance rate for the previous week.

CoreLogic has predicted that the lower auction numbers would likely continue as long as social distancing measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus remained in place.

However, the NSW government announced over the weekend that it would lift its bans on property inspections and on-site auctions across the state from the weekend of 9 May. 

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CoreLogic also noted that with fewer auctions scheduled, this might result in the withdrawal rate normalising, which it predicted might have a positive flow-on effect on the clearance rate.

“It has been dragged lower over the past month due to a surge in auction withdrawals, which are counted as unsold in the clearance rate statistics,” CoreLogic said in its summary.

In Sydney last week, a total of 269 homes were taken to auction, returning a clearance rate of 62.7 per cent. In the corresponding period last year, 539 homes were taken to auction, returning a clearance rate of 57.2 per cent.

In Melbourne, there were 210 auctions in total, with a clearance rate of 63.0 per cent. There were 672 homes taken to auction this time last year, with a clearance rate of 56.6 per cent.

While there were only 31 auctions in Canberra last week, it returned a clearance rate of 72.2 per cent, the highest among all the capital cities.

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There were 41 homes taken to auction in Brisbane last week with a clearance rate of 21.4 per cent, while in Adelaide there were 29 homes taken to auction with a clearance rate of 62.5 per cent.

Perth took only 10 homes to auction with a clearance rate of just 14.3 per cent. This compares to 53 homes taken to auction in the corresponding period last year, with a clearance rate of 14.9 per cent.

One year ago, there were 1,479 homes taken to auction and a clearance rate of 52.5 per cent.

[Related: Housing market ‘relatively resilient’ amid COVID-19]

Auction volumes remain subdued
Auctions volumes remain subdued
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Malavika Santhebennur

Malavika Santhebennur is the features editor on the mortgages titles at Momentum Media.

Before joining the team in 2019, Malavika held roles with Money Management and Benchmark Media. She has been writing about financial services for the past six years.

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