Residential listings rise 3.8% in March without overall pre-Easter volume uplift: SQM

Heading into the quieter autumn months, the number of residential properties listed for sale rose in all capital cities in March, but still remain lower than a year ago, according to figures from SQM Research.

Nationally, residential listings rose 3.8% from 341,662 properties for sale in February to 354,738 in March.

A year ago there were 362,306 properties listed for sale.

Sydney recorded the largest rise in listings in March; rising by 7.6% or 1,966 properties, but listings are down by 15.7% or 5,170 properties year-on-year.

All other cities recorded monthly gains in the range of 2% to 6%.

However, apart from Melbourne (where listings are up 0.2% year-on-year), all capital cities have recorded declines in available real estate listings compared to March 2012.

“It is our opinion that differing from the recovery witnessed in 2009, the upturn in the Australian property market being experienced at present is a much slower, more normal cyclical uplift,” says Louis Christopher, managing director of SQM Research.

"Without the stimulus of a first home buyers grant (as given in 2009) this recovery is based fundamentally on interest rates cuts spread over a longer period of time and an economy recording moderate growth rates.

“This view fits with why in this current recovery stock levels are not in a state of rapid decline as what was recorded in the first half of 2009.”

First-home buyer numbers peaked in May 2009 following of the doubling of the first-home owner grant to $14,000 for those buying existing homes and trebling it to $21,000 for those buy newly built homes in October 2008.

The full boost ran between October 4 2008 and September 30 2009.

Between October 1 2009 and December 31 2009 the boost was halved.

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Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger was a property writer at Property Observer

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