Weekend Auction Wrap: Sydney’s second busiest weekend of the year

Once again, Sydney was the market leader for auction results over the weekend, coming in with a preliminary clearance rate of 81 per cent.

According to the latest data from CoreLogic, Sydney had 931 homes taken to auction making it the second busiest weekend of the year.

In Melbourne, however, there was also a surge in volumes, but the clearance rate fell away to 70.8 per cent. That number will likely be revised to under 70 per cent over the course of the week, suggesting the buyers aren’t quite as strong as Sydney.

Across the country, the nationwide preliminary clearance rate came in at 72.0 per cent, but that too will likely be revised to under 70 per cent as the week progresses and the final results filter through.

This time last year the nationwide clearance rate was only 43.3 per cent with 2,386 which was in fact nine more auctions than what we saw over this weekend.

Justin Nickerson (QLD)
Justin Nickerson saw one of the best weekends for the year on a personal level and is expecting more of the same in the coming weeks.

“We had a really strong weekend and had our highest clearance rate of the whole year which was great. There were still a few long negotiations on some of the properties, but still, plenty of under the hammer sales and our clearance rate was above 70 per cent for the first time all year.”

“I think things will keep moving along in a similar fashion as there are a lot of sellers who want to get off the market before Christmas and conversely a lot of buyers who want to buy before Christmas.

“They want to be able to settle into their home before Christmas and not have to worry about finding something during that period. So there are a lot of people who want to transact.”

Luke Banitsiotis (Victoria)
Luke Banitsiotis saw good results in Melbourne over the weekend, with strong bidder numbers.

“We had four auctions this weekend and sold three. The one that didn’t sell was a vacant block of land that was being sold by a company plus GST. So that was probably a bit odd for the market and they didn’t quite latch onto it.

“The three that sold had really good competitive bidding with at least four bidders.

“There’s definitely a shortage of quality listings. People are happy to buy at the moment, but it’s got to have the price right or it has to be an A-grade listing. We’re expecting the next four weeks to be pretty busy – the market is definitely back, but not quite like 2017.”

David Holmes (Canberra/QLD)
David Holmes saw a particularly good weekend of action in Canberra with some excellent results.

“Canberra had great crowds, with good competitive bidding at each auction and all went over reserve. Brisbane was not as strong but had good crowd sizes. It was just a standard weekend there really.

“December is still looking strong and there’s still plenty of time to do a full campaign right up until Christmas and there’s some good volume there.”

Alec Brown (Canberra)
Alec Brown saw a similar story with great crowds and bidding action across Canberra.

“Canberra had a solid weekend of auction with Corelogic reporting a weekly clearance of 74 per cent. I would expect as more unreported result come through this percentage will drop a little though should stay above 65 per cent.

“We had a very strong start to the busiest auction month of the year for us with 13 from 14 selling under the hammer for a clearance of 93 per cent.

“What is encouraging is these results were from a broad base both in terms of property types and locations right across the territory. Regardless if it was a one-bedroom apartment or five-bedroom family home we saw strong buyer interest with above-average bidder registration numbers.

“This included a well presented three-bedroom home in the outskirts of Canberra attracting 16 registered bidders and a result 20 per cent above reserve.

“With only six or so weeks before Christmas, I anticipate the pace to remain pretty high until mid-December, all indications are pointing to a strong start to 2020.”

Stu Benson (NSW)
Stu Benson is seeing prices continue to push higher in Sydney while noticing some savvy tactics from some buyers.

“I finished the week selling 10 of 14 auctions, for a clearance rate of 71 per cent. A handful of those sales performed well out of alignment with buyer feedback, with the old ‘mid campaign lowball’ strategy alive and well.

“With the market trajectory heading skyward almost daily, it’s understandable that savvy buyers are doing what they can to stymie high reserves by providing little-to-no feedback throughout a campaign.

“It’s not uncommon right now to see buyers performing well in excess of what they said was ‘maximum limit’ pre-auction.

“Thursday and Sunday auctions were standouts for me, both selling competitively above their reserves under the hammer despite being held in a shopping mall and on a Sunday morning respectively.

“The auction process doesn’t know when and where it’s being applied. Saturday auctions are an industry construct, and one we need to evolve from.”

Gavin Croft (Sydney)
Gavin Croft had another strong week in Sydney with an 83 per cent clearance rate again coming in higher than the Sydney average.

“There were 12 BresicWhitney auctions this week, 10 sold giving a weekly auction clearance rate of 83 per cent with an average of 3.5 registered bidders per auction.

“Over the course of the year,  BW have conducted 521 auctions, 428 sold on or before auction day giving a YTD auction clearance rate of 82per cent.”

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a senior journalist at Elite Agent specialising in finance and real estate.