's Insights Housing Market Indicators Report for August 2021 showed the housing market is stronger than this time last year, but weaker than earlier this year.

The report says the slowdown is likely seasonal, but it is also linked to lockdowns throughout July and August.

As the market is nearing 'selling season,' economists say it will be a litmus test for the housing market, depending on interrupting lockdowns.

Director of economic research at REA Group, Cameron Kusher said "it will be interesting to see whether the market strength returns to levels seen earlier this year". 

The latest lending indicators data from the Bureau of Statistics also shows a slight slowdown in owner occupier lending, attributed to lockdowns and market cooldowns.

Trends revealed from report

Weekly sales results weakened off the back of ongoing lockdowns as preliminary sales fell 7.6% over the past week.

These sales volumes are 23% lower than April this year. However, sales volumes are still 53.3% higher than this time last year, and 67.3% higher than August 2019.

Of the properties that have recently sold, the median days on the market was 39 days.

This is slightly higher than the median for June (38 days), but significantly shorter than the 61-day median the year prior.

Across all capital cities, three times as many (42.5%) searches were made for properties over $1 million than properties under $500,000 (13.5%).

This time last year, just over double (36.2%) the number of searches were for over $1 million compared to properties under $500,000 (16.8%).

Mr Kusher expects a further increase in higher priced searches, despite some signs of slowing price growth.

The majority of house hunters are looking for three bedroom homes according to the REA report.

More people are searching for properties during lockdown, with first-home buyers and investors most keen to get their hands on property.

First-home buyer enquiries are the highest they have been since January 2021, and investor enquiries are the highest they have been since early 2019.

Image by Marc R. R. Dorda on Unsplash

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