Vibrant auction market bodes well for Autumn selling season

Buyer confidence appears to have returned just in time for the Autumn selling season, with auction volumes and clearance rates on the rise.

According to Domain’s latest Auction Report for February, clearance rates increased 2.9 percentage points in the combined capitals last month, while climbing 5.2 percentage points in the combined regionals.

Annually, the combined capitals clearance rate is up 1.3 percentage points.

The combined capitals clearance rate is now at 63.7 per cent, which is a four month high, while the combined regional’s clearance rate sits at 43.8 per cent, which is still just down on the same time a year ago.

Auction volumes have climbed for the first time since November last year, with the combined capitals and combined regionals all reporting higher annual figures.

All capital cities also recorded a monthly increase in auction activity, which is typical for this time of year. 

Annually, Sydney auction activity is up 41.2 per cent, followed by Melbourne (29.9 per cent), Brisbane (21.3 per cent) and Adelaide (23.8 per cent). 

Conversely, Canberra is down 1.2 per cent annually.

Domain Chief of Research and Economics Dr Nicola Powell said the higher clearance rates and stronger auction volumes indicated healthy buyer demand and vendor confidence.

““The latest data brings good news for buyers, as the market offers more options and indicates growing confidence among vendors,” she said.

“The increase in clearance rates corresponds with the post-January surge, as buyers who previously missed out on properties now eagerly enter the market. 

“Clearance rates serve as a key indicator of the property market’s strength. 

“Historically, there is a seasonal uptick early in the year, resulting in higher clearance rates compared to the end of the previous year. 

“While it’s too early to determine the strength of the auction market in 2024, this positive trend sets a promising tone for the Autumn selling season.”

Source: Domain


Sydney’s clearance rate rose to a seven-month high and is above 65 per cent for the first time in three months. 

It saw a significant increase from December, up 13.6 percentage points. 

It is the best-performing city of the capitals, overtaking Adelaide, and saw the largest positive annual change, but the pace of growth is easing.   


Melbourne’s clearance rate is above 60 per cent for the first time since October 2023. 

However, it remains low relative to the second half of 2023.

It is up by 0.5 percentage points over the year, but annual growth continues to slow.


Brisbane’s clearance rate is the weakest outcome of the capital cities. 

It is below 50 per cent for the third successive month, the first time this has happened since December 2022. 

Brisbane is a less auction-centric market, so variations are expected and consistent with historical outcomes.


Adelaide is no longer the best-performing capital city. 

It is below 65 per cent for the fourth month in a row, the weakest outcome since December 2022. 

Clearance rates are down annually by 4.6 percentage points, the second largest decline of the capitals.


Canberra saw the largest annual drop in clearance rates of the capitals, down over the year by 7.1 percentage points. 

Outcomes remain weak compared to its historical performance, with clearance rates below 55 per cent for the fifth consecutive month. 

This is the first time this happened since mid-2019.

Show More

Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Editor at Elite Agent.