Watching the number of people looking at listings is a growing technique for signaling a hotspot, according to a number of experts.
Property site realestate.com.au, under REA Group, keeps detailed internal statistics of views that help to identify ‘seller’s markets’, said general manager of sales and operations, Arthur Charlaftis.
“With three million people visiting our site each month, our robust data shows where people are looking to buy. These suburbs indicate a high level of competition at a listing level, which generally translates to increased participation in the market by consumers down the track,” Mr Charlaftis said.
“During the holiday period we see more people searching while on the go and more people clicking through to view property pages. During this time people are also spending longer on our site at approximately 11 minutes per session,” he said.
The listings’ viewing statistics show clear correlations between demand and supply.
Currently, according to data from the site, the top 10 suburbs for the ratio of those looking for each listing totals eight suburbs in South Australia and two in Victoria.
South Australian suburbs Malvern, Kensington Gardens, Goodwood, Norwood, Walkerville, Clarence Park, Hyde Park and St. Peters were identified, as were the Victorian suburbs Clifton Hill and Park Orchards.
Infolio buyer advocate, Jake Milne, told Smart Property Investment that he has used this listings traffic method as a starting point for locating hotspots in the past.
“Not many investors are aware of the 'Demand to Supply' model this website has readily available for free,” he said.
“Although there is a time lag between when the data is updated and where we are now, one can note possible trends emerging in the supply graph that may affect median house prices.
“Sharp decreases or increases in demand often reflect in the median house prices one week to 12 weeks later, depending on the location and it’s sensitivity.”
For this reason, investors need to be looking early at this model to truly time the market, as any later and much growth may be lost.
He explains savvy investors realise this isn’t an ‘exact science’, however it does help form an overall pattern, “much like technical analysis of stocks.”
For those using this to look towards Adelaide, they should first look at the bigger picture, including long-term trends and growth drivers.
“Once establishing the larger picture they could then whittle down the hotspots using auction clearance rates, 12-month sales results and internet traffic as per below," he continued.
“The key to success is to use a multitude of indicators with the aim of having them confirm each other, rather than just basing a decision on a 10-year growth history, or a single infrastructure project.”
The top suburb on realestate.com.au’s list, SA’s Malvern, has highly sought after villas and bungalows, according to Lew Toop from Toop&Toop Real Estate.
“It’s minutes from the city and there’s a good range of land sizes, from your average block to quite large land holdings. It’s the type of suburb that suits people with families working in the city, as there’s access to great schools and shops,” Mr Toop said.