According to The Australian Financial Review today, the Sydney residential property auction market has charged ahead, while Melbourne and Brisbane trod water over the weekend.
Many areas in Sydney have revived from the post-Christmas lull, belying forecasts that the market would cool this year.
Although a little lower than the 78.1 per cent of the previous week, this weekend 77 per cent of the properties put to auction were sold, according to Corelogic RP Data, showing local demand – owner occupiers and investors – was strong.
"The buying activity is very area-specific though, with northern beaches getting strong demand while places like Frenchs Forest have been quite quiet," Belle Property's Kirsten Bertram said.
But it is still early in the year and the true test will be the next "Super Saturday" on March 19, when the market has had a "little way from Christmas", Corelogic RP Data's Kevin Brogan warned.
"The signs are encouraging but volumes are still pretty low [in Sydney]," he said.
Melbourne has been more consistent between the two major housing markets, reporting an auction clearance rate in the range of 70 to 77 per cent over the last four weeks, compared with Sydney's volatile 45 to 78 per cent. Volumes were also more steady than Sydney's and comparable with last year's numbers, Mr Brogan added.
Its clearance rate on the weekend was 73 per cent.
Melbourne buyer's agent Christopher Koren said while auctions in areas such as inner-city North Carlton and North Fitzroy were hot, the private treaty market, which has the majority of sales, was subdued in Melbourne.
The third-biggest market, Brisbane, which is not a big auction market, remained steady but with significantly higher volumes, Mr Brogan said.
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