Last year saw real estate prices increase 10-15% in the Sutherland Shire after several tough years but this year the rapid increase in sale prices across Sydney has been so dramatic that I would estimate the price increase is already 10-15% for the 5 months of 2014, especially in the Sutherland Shire. I do not think we have experienced this sort of price growth spurt since July 2003, when every house sold achieved a new record and properties for sale were in such short supply that people tended to buy first, then sell to avoid being without a home to go to.
241 Attunga Rd, Yowie Bay
It’s back to the days when pest and building inspectors are booked solid, most properties are being marketed as Auction, serious buyers need to attend the first open house if they want to secure the property and every TV channel has a show about renovating and selling!
Will this continue? Should we wait? Is this a bubble? These are the questions buyers keep asking me and I honestly don’t know. What I do know is that Sydneysiders are obsessed with real estate again, interest rates are low and there is a feeling of confidence again in the property sector. If only I had a crystal ball.
As we head into the final weeks of the election campaign and winter, real estate agents are madly trying to sell their auction listings prior to Election Day which is notoriously and traditionally a quiet day in real estate. This election also marks the beginning of the spring auction campaign but there is a marked drop in auctions scheduled. Ideally you select an auction date either side of the election weekend but this year it was particularly hard due to the political turmoil in Australia and the shifting dates, and some properties have been caught in the shifting dates. On the weekend prior to the election there are 13 auctions scheduled to go ahead in our area, whereas on Election Day there are only 7 currently up for auction. As is always the case the following week the auction numbers will pick up dramatically and this happens no matter if there is a change of government or if there is a status quo, for some reason buyers don’t feel the need so urgently to buy a house at auction on Election Day.
Most agents are looking forward to the election being over so we can list more properties because winter has been a period of very limited stock and lots of frustrated buyers combined with attractively low interest rate opportunities. We are hoping that Spring and an increase in political confidence and stability will trigger down to encourage vendors to sell. Most encouraging for vendors is that Winter 2013 has seen a dramatic rebound in prices across Sydney, in particular in the $700,000 – $1.3mil price range. Surely this will encourage vendors to sell!
Where to vote?
Polling places will be open for voting between 8am and 6pm on Saturday 7th September. The Cook electorate covers as far west as Bonnet Bay & Como, east of the train line at Sutherland, all suburbs north of the Hacking River (from Grays Point to Cronulla and all suburbs south of the Georges River & Botany Bay) as per the map below.
The polling booths below fall between Cronulla & Caringbah:
Uniting Church Hall – Cnr Burke Rd & Gosport St, Cronulla
Cronulla Public School – 18-24 Burraneer Bay Rd, Cronulla
St. Aloysius Primary School Cronulla – 18 Giddings Ave, Cronulla
Cronulla South Public School – 121 Ewos Pde, Cronulla
Cronulla High School – Captain Cook Drive, Cronulla
Woolooware Public School – Riverview Ave, Woolooware
Burraneer Bay Public School – 161 Burraneer Bay Rd, Burraneer
Lilli Pilli Public School – Turriell Bay Rd, Lilli Pilli
Caringbah Public School – Port Hacking Rd, Caringbah South
Laguna St Public School – 204 Caringbah Rd, Caringbah South
St. Philip’s Anglican Church Hall – 402 Port Hacking Rd, Caringbah
Caringbah High School – 85 Willarong Rd, Caringbah
The Reserve Bank meets today and the consensus is that that there will be a rate cut of .25% and with a Federal Election date now booked in this is good news for buyers. Yes I say buyers! Not since Winter 2003 have I seen a shortage of listings like this winter, where buyers come through an open house and eye their competition, recognising other buyers as bidders at the previous week’s auction, both being outbid by someone who went the extra $10,000.
In the current market buyers have to be ready to pounce, think twice and you will miss out. Mind you with fixed interest rates below 5%, it is a great time to be buying, there just needs to be more on the market for all the buyers currently looking.
Hopefully with the certainty of an election date and spring around the corner more people will decide to sell in the coming months and current buyers will be unpacked and moved in for Christmas 2013 in their new home.
Well at least this winter, if you do decide to sell, you would be considered a savvy vendor.
Winter weather has been relatively mild with few rain days, so most properties are still very presentable. Traditionally people wait till Spring, but I stress traditionally because now it’s not just the weather that affects the sale price.I would argue that supply and demand is one of the major influences on property prices. In recent months in the Sutherland Shire and across Sydney open house numbers have dramatically increased, days on the market have significantly reduced and prices are on the up, up, up!
If you are thinking of selling, I ask you this question, do you think you will get a better price in spring when you could be competing with lots of properties in a similar price range but the flowers are blooming in your yard? Or do you think you will get a better price in winter, when there are just a few similar houses on the market and an abundance of buyers clammering for the same home, your home?!
And just to throw a spanner in the works this spring, we have a federal election. Every time there is an election, the few weeks either side of that date, (for whatever reason) buyer activity drops off.
No year is ever the same with economic and political circumstances affecting the supply and demand of the real estate market, but this year, most agents are seeing a shortage of good properties to sell and very competitive bidding from buyers.
HSBC this week dropped their 2 year fixed rate to 4.59%! Who would have thought a fixed rate under 5% was possible even 12 months ago! It is now cheaper to have a mortgage than pay rent for a lot of people in a lot of suburbs in Sydney. This will only encourage more buyers into the market this winter.
So if you are considering making a move this year, I would encourage you to do it right now!
The year has started with some fast and furious selling at Beach & Bay Realty, both auction campaigns in February were sold prior to auction over only 2 weeks and a private treaty sale went through in 5 days!
We seem to have started the year with more buyer inspections and a little more confidence than last year, this is reflective in the auction clearance rates Sydneywide for Feb and March which are much improved on 2012. We will continue to track the auction results in our area of expertise throughout 2013 so please join our e-newsletter for weekly updates of auction sales.
Breeze @ 19-21 Gerrale St, Cronulla
While interest rates are relatively low, we should continue to see a steady real estate market in the Sutherland Shire. It’s been a while since you could secure a fixed interest loan for 2 years for 4.99%!
We are currently marketing Breeze @ 19 -21 Gerrale St, Cronulla, Sammut Developments latest luxury project in Cronulla. Off the plan sales have commenced and for anyone wanting to secure an apartment in this development the opportunity is there now to put a deposit down with 2 years to save the rest!
Happy selling and happy buying in 2013.
SOLD PRIOR TO AUCTION - 15 Seaforth Ave, Woolooware
Last week our local postcodes of 2230 to 2229 achieved a respectable clearance rate of 50%.
Sydneywide achieved a 60% clearance rate according to Home Price Guide but I am sure the true figure is probably closer to our local 50% result. Home Price Guide doesn’t have agents on the ground actually going to auctions but instead relies on agents to submit the data. Agents traditionally are reluctant to submit withdrawn, passed in and cancelled results.
In our local area, last week’s sales included several properties over a million dollars where previous weeks have proved tough for the early million price range.
Our suburb auction focus is Cronulla, Woolooware, Burraneer, Caringbah, Lilli Pilli and Dolans Bay
Last week’s local auction statistics came in at a 63% clearance rate compared with Sydney wide of 57% which is a great result for the local property market and a vast improvement on the 23% clearance rate for first week of auctions for 2012. Overall there seems to be less properties for sale or auction which might be keeping the pressure on buyers to some degree. It would be great if we could continue to beat the Sydney clearance rate. I think the days of 85% clearance rates are a thing of the past and we obsess over this a little too much.
More important than auction clearance rates is that the property sells, if not at auction, soon after. Auctions are a marketing strategy and not selling at auction does not mean the marketing has failed. Some properties are hard to price and sometimes the property is received by the market at a different level to that targeted by the agent or the owner or both. If your property doesn’t sell on auction day, don’t despair. Listen to the market, get feedback from the market place and your agent and then if you are willing to sell at that price list the property for sale. If priced correctly post auction the property will sell soon after the auction. Auction statistics show that a property that does not sell at auction will, if listed for sale with a realistic price, sell within the following 2 weeks of post auction marketing. If it doesn’t sell in that period, the chances of selling steeply decline.