Auction activity has reduced over the week, but the preliminary clearance rate across capital cities has still managed to hold above 75 per cent.
Latest figures from CoreLogic revealed that auction volumes fell over the week ended 8 August 2021 to 1,672 homes from last week’s 1,761.
This was about 15 per cent lower than the initial expectation that 1,860 homes would go under the hammer, with about 10 per cent rescheduled to a later date.
The preliminary clearance rate across the combined capitals also saw a slide, down to 76.4 per cent from last week’s final results of 77.2 per cent.
According to research analyst Jade Harling, the decline in activity and success rate comes from Melbourne’s latest announcement of a seven-day snap lockdown, which means three of the nation’s largest capital cities were again in lockdown.
Still, Melbourne was the busiest auction market over the week, with 710 homes taken to auction — slightly higher than last week’s 656 but down 15 per cent on the initial predicted count following the announcement of a lockdown coming into the weekend.
The Victorian capital recorded a preliminary auction clearance rate of 73.5 per cent — down from last week’s final results of 77.2 per cent — and a withdrawn result of 18 per cent.
Sydney followed Melbourne with 576 auctions as the city nears two months in lockdown, resulting in a preliminary clearance rate of 80.4 per cent — higher than last week’s final results of 76.1 per cent. Only 14 per cent were reportedly withdrawn.
“The city has shown resilience under lockdown conditions,” Ms Harling said.
“Over 500–600 homes proceed to auction each week since the lockdown commenced and the final clearance rate remains well over 70 per cent each week,” she noted.
Brisbane, which is also in lockdown, saw the highest auction volumes of the smaller capital cities at 160, which returned a success rate of 67.4 per cent — down on last week’s final results of 72.3 per cent. The proportion of auctions withdrawn hiked up to 22.5 per cent over the week.
While the capital cities in lockdown remain resilient so far, Ray White chief economist Nerida Conisbee said the declining level of stock will stand as the biggest challenge in the auction market moving forward.
Ultimately, the best-case scenario for buyers would be for lockdowns to end as soon as possible, as “analysis of previous lockdowns has shown a jump in properties for sale once they end”, according to her.
Looking further into the smaller auction markets, Canberra continued to be the best performing, with a preliminary auction clearance rate of 86.7 per cent out of 111 auctions — almost at par with last week’s 86.6 per cent resulting from 119 auctions.
Adelaide followed with 78 per cent out of 93 auctions, then Perth with 70.6 per cent out 22 auctions.
Only Sydney and Perth surpassed their final clearance rates from the previous week.