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Melbourne auction market strong despite lockdown 4.0

Victoria’s lockdown 4.0 failed to dampen the auctions market in Melbourne last week, although volumes were slightly lower than previously predicted, according to CoreLogic.

The property research group’s auctions data for the week ending 30 May revealed that there were 1,264 homes taken to auction in Melbourne last week.

Melbourne and Victoria are currently in lockdown after fresh circuit breaker restrictions were imposed at 11.59pm on Thursday, 27 May, and are due to end at 11.59pm on 3 June.

This followed a returned traveller being infected while quarantining in an Adelaide hotel and testing positive after returning home to Melbourne.

Once again, property inspections have been closed while auctions have moved remotely, with the real estate agent also working remotely as part of the restrictions on the real estate sector.

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Despite this, auctions volumes remained strong in Melbourne, while CoreLogic recorded a preliminary clearance rate of 72.8 per cent in the capital city.

However, CoreLogic noted that due to the lockdown in Melbourne, the auctions volume last week was revised down, with 1,451 auctions originally predicted on Wednesday for the week ending 30 May.

The preliminary results have also shown that so far, 20.6 per cent of auctions were reported as withdrawn, while 48.4 per cent of successful auctions were sold prior to auction.

CoreLogic added that over the year to date and excluding the temporary circuit breaker lockdown period in February, the average proportion of auctions sold prior to the auction event was about 26.0 per cent, while only 4.5 per cent of auctions were withdrawn.

During the previous week, there were 1,291 auctions in Melbourne with a preliminary clearance rate of 77.6 per cent, later revised down to 749 per cent at final figures.

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There were 261 auctions held in Melbourne this time last year, CoreLogic reported.

Across the combined capital cities, a total of 2,930 homes went under the hammer last week, representing the third highest number of auctions CoreLogic has seen across the combined capitals in 2021, it said.

However, it added that last week was predicted to be the second highest auctions week in 2021, but this did not materialise due to the lockdown in Victoria.

CoreLogic recorded a 75.7 per cent preliminary clearance rate across the combined capital cities, down from 78.2 per cent the previous week, which revised down to 75.6 per cent at final figures.

Sydney played host to 1,177 auctions last week, compared with 1,103 the previous week and 452 this time last year.

The city returned a preliminary clearance rate of 81.0 per cent, higher than 80.0 per cent the previous week, which revised down to 76.9 per cent at final figures.

Across the smaller capital cities, Canberra recorded the highest preliminary clearance of 84.7 per cent across 94 auctions.

Brisbane recorded a preliminary success rate of 71.9 per cent across 192 auctions last week, while Adelaide registered a 69.3 per cent preliminary clearance rate across 163 auctions, and Perth recorded a 34.8 per cent preliminary clearance rate across 38 auctions, CoreLogic data showed.

Home values up almost 10 per cent over the year

The CoreLogic Daily Home Value Index has revealed that home values across the combined five capital cities have risen by 9.9 per cent year-to-date, and 9.0 per cent over the past 12 months.

Home values recorded a 2.1 per cent monthly increase and a 0.5 per cent weekly rise, the index showed.

New property listings have continued to increase, with the combined capital cities registering a 75.8 per cent rise in new listings over the past 12 months.

Perth recorded a 114.4 per cent increase in new listings during this period, while Darwin recorded a 130.9 per cent increase off a lower base of property listings. New listings increased by 84.3 per cent in Melbourne and 71.8 per cent in Sydney, according to CoreLogic.

Overall housing finance activity decreased nationally by 0.9 per cent month-on-month, driven by a 3.8 per cent decline in NSW and a 1.9 per cent decline in Queensland, while activity also declined in Western Australia by 0.2 per cent.

However, mortgage market activity increased by 5.4 per cent in South Australia, 4.7 per cent in Tasmania and 1.3 per cent in Victoria, the figures showed.

[Related: Industry groups slam Victoria’s ‘budget repair’ plans]

Melbourne auction market strong despite lockdown 4.0
Melbourne auction market strong despite lockdown 4.0
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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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