Melbourne listings skyrocket as restrictions ease 

author-avatar By on October 22, 2020
Melbourne listings skyrocket as restrictions ease 

Photo by Parag Gaikwad on Unsplash

The number of properties coming onto the market in Melbourne has soared to its highest level since March, skyrocketing by 330% since private inspections resumed in late September.

After Premier Daniel Andrews' announcement on September 28 that private real estate inspections would be allowed, property listings skyrocketed almost instantly.

CoreLogic data shows the number of new property listings added to the market for sale increased by 330% in the four weeks ending 18th October.

This represents an increase in new listings from 1,606 in the four weeks to September 20th to nearly 7,000 over the period to October 18th.

Buying a home or looking to refinance? The table below features home loans with some of the lowest variable interest rates on the market for owner occupiers.

Base criteria of: a $400,000 loan amount, variable, principal and interest (P&I) home loans with an LVR (loan-to-value) ratio of at least 80%. If products listed have an LVR <80%, they will be clearly identified in the product name along with the specific LVR. The product and rate must be clearly published on the Product Provider’s web site. Monthly repayments were calculated based on the selected products’ advertised rates, applied to a $400,000 loan with a 30-year loan term.

CoreLogic Head of Research Eliza Owen said listing numbers have been extremely responsive to changes in social distancing policies.

"After months of restrictions, pent-up demand from sellers has accumulated so much, that more stock was recently added for sale in Melbourne than any other capital city region," Ms Owen said.

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Source: CoreLogic

Ms Owen said it's possible part of the surge in new property listings could be a sign of distressed sales.

"A significant increase in new stock across Melbourne can mean different things for the state of the market. ‘Forced’ selling was a possibility from the pandemic, as significant job losses across Victoria may have limited the ability of some households to keep paying their mortgage," Ms Owen said. 

"The latest financial stability review from the RBA noted that October was the period most mortgage deferrals were set to expire, which may have contributed to an increase in new listings in recent weeks. However, CoreLogic data does not point to a significant increase in mortgagee in possession events across Victoria."

Data from the Australian Banking Association (ABA) shows repayments have resumed on almost half (45%) of all deferred mortgages.

But recent data from Commonwealth Bank showed 14% of deferred home loans had at least one borrower still receiving JobSeeker payments, which could mean borrowers may struggle to meet their repayments beyond the four-month mortgage deferral extension.

Rising listings sign of market rebound

Ms Owen said the large increase in property listings could also point to a market rebound as vendors sell to meet rising demand.

"High buyer demand can also mitigate risk for distressed sales, because the added demand pushes up prices," Ms Owen said. 

"One way to assess the state of the market through listings data is to observe how total listing volumes are tracking against new listings. New listings rose faster than total listings across Melbourne in the four weeks ending 18th of October.

"New stock added to market increased by around 5,370 properties, but the change in total stock was only 4,790. This suggests at least some stock on market has been absorbed over the past four weeks."

Other indicators could signal an improvement in property market conditions. In the week ending 18th of October, the final auction clearance rate was 60.2% in Melbourne, which Ms Owen said was achieved alongside the highest volume of auctions seen in two months.

"Over the past month, the rate of decline across Melbourne dwelling values has also eased. It is clear that even after long, strict restrictions, vendors are keen to sell," Ms Owen said.

"However, due to the lag between an initial property listing and a sale, it will be a few weeks before we can understand how strong buyer appetite is."


Disclaimers

The entire market was not considered in selecting the above products. Rather, a cut-down portion of the market has been considered which includes retail products from at least the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and Australia’s larger non-banks:

  • The big four banks are: ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac
  • The top 10 customer-owned Institutions are the ten largest mutual banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia, ranked by assets under management in November 2020. They are (in descending order): Credit Union Australia, Newcastle Permanent, Heritage Bank, Peoples’ Choice Credit Union, Teachers Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, IMB Bank, Beyond Bank, Bank Australia and P&N Bank.
  • The larger non-bank lenders are those who (in 2020) has more than $9 billion in Australian funded loans and advances. These groups are: Resimac, Pepper, Liberty and Firstmac.

Some providers' products may not be available in all states. To be considered, the product and rate must be clearly published on the product provider's web site.

In the interests of full disclosure, Savings.com.au, Performance Drive and Loans.com.au are part of the Firstmac Group. To read about how Savings.com.au manages potential conflicts of interest, along with how we get paid, please click through onto the web site links.

*The Comparison rate is based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. Warning: this comparison rate is true only for this example and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.

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author-avatar
Emma joined Savings.com.au as a Finance Journalist in 2019. She is a journalist with more than five years experience across print, broadcast and digital media, with previous stints at Style Magazines, 4ZZZ radio, and as editor of The Real Estate Conversation. She's most passionate about improving the financial literacy of young women and millennials by writing about complex financial topics in a way that's easy for the average Joe (or Jill) to understand. When she's not writing about finance she's watching Greys Anatomy (again).

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