New listings soared more than 20 per cent in August, with Sydney and Melbourne recording their busiest end to winter in more than a decade.
According to the latest PropTrack Listings Report, new listings on realestate.com.au grew 20.5 per cent nationally in August, which was 4.1 per cent higher than the same time last year, and the first positive year-on-year change since August 2022.
Activity in Sydney and Melbourne led the charge, with new listings rising 25.7 per cent in August in the Harbour City and 24.9 per cent in the Victorian capital.
PropTrack Senior Economist Angus Moore said compared to the same time last year, new listings in Sydney were up 18.4 per cent, while Melbourne’s were up 20.8 per cent on August 2022.
“After a quieter first half of 2023, property market activity appears to be picking up in Sydney and Melbourne, with both markets busier-than-typical in August,” he said.
“Activity in many other capitals has also increased but remains subdued compared to a year ago.
“Activity is likely to continue increasing over the spring selling season, reaching the typical peak in October and November.”
New listings also soared in Canberra, with a 38.9 per cent jump in August, which is 23.2 per cent higher than the same time last year.
In Darwin, new listings climbed 24.1 per cent in August but remained 5.4 per cent down on August 2022.
It’s a similar story in other capital cities, with new listings soaring in Adelaide (18.9 per cent), Perth (17.9 per cent), Hobart (13.8 per cent) and Brisbane (11.8 per cent) for August 2023, but all remain between 1.8 per cent and 10.4 per cent down on the year prior.
Mr Moore said selling conditions and home prices had also improved compared to late 2022.
“Home prices nationally have continued to recover, posting their eighth consecutive month of growth in August,” he said.
“Home prices nationally are now just 0.8 per cent below the March 2022 peak.
“Auction clearance rates remained solid through winter and have improved from the levels recorded in late 2022.”
Mr Moore also said the recent pause in interest rates had also returned some confidence to the market.
“The cash rate has remained steady at 4.1 per cent for three consecutive months,” he said.
“While there may still be further interest rate increases, markets are pricing in only a small probability of that occurring.
“Inflation appears to be heading back towards target at a pace consistent with the Reserve Bank’s expectations.”
The report also showed that regional areas also recorded a ramp up in new listing activity in August, rising 18 per cent month-on-month.
But, unlike the capital cities, new listings in regional areas remain 2.2 per cent lower than at the same time last year.
Still, Mr Moore said the fundamentals of housing demand remained strong.
“Unemployment remains very low by historic standards, though it has edged higher recently,” he said.
“Rental markets remain extremely tight across much of the country, and rents are growing quickly amid strong demand and limited rental availability.
“International migration and population growth are forecast to remain strong, which will further add to housing demand.”