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A mixed bag of auction clearance rates

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Zoe Pointon is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of OpenAgent. Over the years, she's had the privilege of collaborating with some of the brightest minds in real estate, amassing over a decade of invaluable experience and a treasure trove of insights around the property buying and selling process.

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As the spring selling season kicks into gear, home sellers in Sydney and Brisbane will no doubt be encouraged by the rise in the latest auction clearance rates in the last week of September. Melbournians need not be too worried, but those in other centres should prepare for sluggish market conditions.

According to CoreLogic RP Data, an overall preliminary auction clearance rate of 71.3 per cent was recorded in the last week of September across Australia’s main capital cities. This was up from 69.9 per cent the previous week, the lowest clearance rate since the end of March.

Auction volumes were high, with a total of 2,820 auctions held over the week, up from 2,565 over the previous week. In comparison, auction volumes were lower over the same time last year due to the AFL Grand Final in Melbourne, which meant only 1,369 auctions took place across the combined capital cities.

Sydney led the way in the last week of September with a preliminary clearance rate of 74.2 per cent after 1,193 Sydney homes went to auction.

That was a big jump on the previous week when Sydney recorded the lowest final auction clearance rate for the year (70.7 per cent) on the 1,041 auctions held across the city. But the figure is down on the same time last year when 76.9 per cent of the 933 homes up for grabs were successfully sold under the hammer.

Homes in Sydney’s Eastern suburbs were the star performers in most recent figures, with 89.8 per cent clearing at auction.

Brisbane’s latest preliminary clearance rate was also buoyant – up at 58.9 per cent compared to 50 per cent the previous week and 48.9 per cent the same time last year.

Across Brisbane, 199 auctions were held which, again, is higher than the 143 held the previous week, but down on 179 the same time in 2014. Of the homes that went to auction on the Gold Coast, 54.3 per cent sold.

In Melbourne, the latest clearance rate of 73.3 per cent was slightly down on the previous week’s 73.7 per cent, giving the city its fourth lowest clearance rate for the year. Melbourne hosted 1,197 auctions – up from 1,127 the previous week and a huge jump on 112 a year ago.

Melbourne’s strongest performer was the Outer East region with a preliminary clearance rate of 81.8 per cent, followed by the Inner South region at 80 per cent.

Adelaide hosted 127 auctions in the last week of September and for the 80 reported results, its preliminary auction clearance rate was 68.8 per cent – down from the previous week’s 71.4 per cent on 99 auctions, but better than last year’s 65.6 per cent on the 73 homes that went under the hammer.

Meanwhile, Perth’s clearance rate of 36.4 per cent during the week being reviewed was lower than the previous week (38.5 per cent), but higher than this time last year (33.3 per cent).

For Perth, the number of homes taken to auction in the last week of September was 25, down on the previous week’s 31, but higher than the six of last year.

And in Canberra, 58 homes went to auction. The preliminary clearance rate across 36 reported auctions was 50 per cent.

At the same time, there were 21 auctions across Tasmania, with three successful results out of the 18 reported.

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