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Perth homes snapped up with listings at 13-year low

Perth listing levels have fallen to their lowest point in 13 years, with homes selling at the fastest rate on record.

New data from the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA) showed the number of properties for sale in the western capital dropped to just 5885 at the end of May, which is 8.8 per cent lower than April and 29.3 per cent lower than the same time last year.

REIWA Chief Executive Officer Cath Hart said the last time listings were this low as mid-2010.

“Despite 11 interest rate rises, demand hasn’t slowed,” Ms Hart said. 

“Homes are selling in a median of 12 days. This is the fastest median time on market since we started keeping these records in 1998 and has only been recorded once before – in March 2021. 

“And despite another rate rise yesterday, we expect demand to remain strong. 

“WA’s population is growing, and people are choosing to buy established homes rather than tackle the rental market. 

“Increasing costs and ongoing delays in the building industry are also seeing people buy rather than build.”

Ms Hart said sales had outpaced the number of properties coming to the market for the past two months, which was seeing the number of homes available for sale on reiwa.com plunge.

“The number of sales each week has been 15 per cent higher than the number of weekly new listings since mid-April,” she said. 

“Since 2010, sales have usually been 15 – 30 per cent lower than new listings. 

“For sales to be this much higher than new listings is unusual and has only happened a few times in the past 13 years, and never for two months in a row. 

“If this continues we can expect the number of properties for sale to decline further.” 

Despite the drop in the number of properties available for sale, Ms Hart said there was no need for buyers to be concerned, new properties were still coming onto the market in reasonable numbers.

Houses remained the most popular with buyers, with the number of houses available for sale falling below 2700 for the first time since April 2010.

Sales activity was greatest in the $500,000 to $1 million price bracket, while sales in the $1 million -plus range remained steady and dropped in the under $500,000 sector.

CoreLogic’s Perth home value index increased 1.3 per cent in May and 2.4 per cent over the past three months. 

While all major capital city markets have improved recently, Perth and Adelaide are the only two to show growth year-on-year and Perth is the only capital city where dwelling values have returned to record highs. 

According to reiwa.com, the top performing suburbs for house price growth in May were Hillarys (up 5.8 per cent to $1.1 million), Kinross (up 2 per cent to $632,500), Halls Head (up 1.9 per cent to $540,000), Secret Harbour (up 1.8 per cent to $539,500) and Melville (up 1.3 per cent to $1.002 million). 

Parmelia, Seville Grove, Warnbro, Golden Bay and Byford recorded growth over 1 per cent. 

The fastest selling suburbs were Seville Grove (five days); Armadale, Brabham, Butler, Cooloongup, Greenfields, Hilbert and Port Kennedy (six days); and Padbury and Palmyra (seven days). 

“With the exception of Padbury and Palmyra, these suburbs have median house prices below the Perth median, with Armadale the cheapest at $320,000,” Ms Hart said. 

“While sales activity may have fallen in the lower price bracket, these figures suggest buyers are still looking for affordable homes and are acting quickly when they find them.” 

Rental listings also dropped 1.9 per cent in May to 1969 properties for rent on reiwa.com

That’s a 13.8 per cent fall on May 2022.

“Rental listings were slightly above 2,000 for a few weeks during May, but have dropped again,” Ms Hart said. 

“The rental market remains extremely tight and under current conditions we expect to see rental listings hover around these levels for the rest of the year. 

“There may be some slight relief for tenants, with members reporting strong interest from Eastern States investors, particularly in areas priced below the median house price. “Interestingly some developers are also noting that Eastern States investors are buying blocks of land, however if they plan to build this will take some time to flow through to the rental market. 

“And while legislative uncertainty is one of the reasons behind investors leaving the market in the past couple of years, now we finally have a direction on the reforms to the Residential Tenancies Act, investors and potential investors can move forward with more confidence.” 

Perth’s median dwelling rent price was $550 per week for May. This is unchanged from April but $20 higher (3.8 per cent) than three months ago and $80 higher (17 per cent) than May 2022. 

The median weekly house rent price fell from $575 in April to $565 in May, while the median weekly unit rent remained unchanged at $500. 

According to reiwa.com, the suburbs that saw the most growth in their median rent price in May were North Fremantle (up 40 per cent to $1,050 per week), Nedlands (up 39 per cent to $900), Shenton Park (up 30 per cent to $750), Applecross (up 25 per cent to $688), and Tuart Hill (up 24 per cent to $550). 

It took a median of 15 days to lease a rental during May, one day faster than April, but one day slower than three months ago.

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Editor at Elite Agent.

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