Capitals post solid auction clearance results on 'Super Saturday'

By Andrew Jennings

Auction clearance rates across the capital cities scored a steady result at the weekend as the autumn auction season signed off for the Easter and Anzac holidays with a surge of vendors eager to offload properties.

Billed as the biggest property weekend ever to hit Sydney, the auction clearance rate in the habour city came in at 78.1 per cent based on 697 reported auctions, according to Australian Property Monitors (APM). This was up on the 73.5 per cent registered the previous Saturday, based on 709 reported auctions.

Senior economist for APM Dr Andrew Wilson said the result indicates a moderating of buyer activity as affordability constraints start to bite in the market.

“Sydney’s record-breaking early autumn auction market takes a well-earned breather over the next two weekends with the distractions of the Easter and Anzac Day holiday breaks. The market will pick up over the weeks following the break, but lower buyer and seller activity can be expected moving into the typically quieter winter period,” said Dr Wilson.

Will Hampson from My Auctioneer, who enjoyed a bumper day with 63 auctions across the city, described Saturday “as the biggest day on record for Sydney”.

Rocky Bartolotto, director and chief auctioneer at Property Auction Services, added that given the frenzied activity in the market the outlook for Sydney for the rest of 2014 remained positive.

“I believe it will remain consistent with what was witnessed today [Saturday] and as we lead into what typically is the quiet period with listing numbers dropping off,” he said.

In Melbourne, APM recorded a clearance rate of 72.3 per cent based on an impressive 944 reported auctions. This result represents a slight jump from 71.7 per cent the previous week.

“Listing numbers this year [in Melbourne] so far have been significantly higher than last year’s autumn performance, reflecting increased confidence from sellers keen to engage a market that has produced consistently solid results over the past three months,” said Dr Wilson.

“Recent signs of an auction market just holding the line continue, however, with the trend in clearance rates waning slightly over the past month despite Saturday’s reasonably sturdy result,” he added.

In Brisbane, APM reported an auction clearance rate of 33.3 per cent for Saturday, based on 83 reported auctions.

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