First annual decline in Australian home values since October 2019

The value of Australian residential real estate continued to decline in October, down to $9.5 trillion from $9.6 trillion, according to CoreLogic.

National values are now 0.9 lower compared to the same time last year, marking the first annual decline since October 2019.

While the housing market downswing has become more broad-based, the monthly rate of decline slowed to -1.2 per cent, from -1.4 per cent through September.

Despite the weakness across the country, regional South Australia continues to buck the trend, with values up 20.4 per cent on an annual basis. 

Meanwhile, Sydney saw the softest conditions in the country, down 8.6 per cent over the year.

Sales volumes are also trending lower as buyer demand slows. 

CoreLogic noted that in the 12 months to October, there were 551,981 sales nationally, down 9.3 per cent compared to the previous year, and properties are taking longer to sell. 

“In the three months to October, the median days on market was 36, up from a low of 20 days over the three months to November 2021,” CoreLogic said.

“Similarly, vendor discounting has also increased from the recent low of -2.9 per cent recorded in the three months to November last year. 

“In the three months to October, the median vendor discount at the national level was -4.3 per cent.

At the same time, new listings are also on the rise, with 38,438 newly advertised properties added for sale over the past month, however, this is still lower than in previous years.

At the national level, total listings were fairly steady through October, with advertised stock levels remaining low compared to previous years, in part due to the subdued flow of new listings.

Meanwhile, clearance rates steadied during October, averaging 59.5 per cent in the four weeks ending November 6, down from 78.5 per cent at the same time last year.

Rental growth is also starting to slow down across the country after annual rent growth reached 10 per cent.

The value of secured housing finance fell 8.2 per cent in the past month, taking new housing finance 22.4 per cent lower than a recent peak in May. 

Investor finance fell 6 per cent, compared with a 9.3 per cent fall in owner-occupied lending in September.

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a freelance journalist specialising in finance and real estate.