Clearance Rates Ease by 3.1% Over June Quarter Despite Spike in Auction Activity

CoreLogic Quarterly Auction Market Review reveals clearance rates across the combined capital cities fell from 74.8% over the first quarter to 71.7% at the end of June quarter.

Sellers have been experiencing a tougher auction market over the past quarter, with new data from the CoreLogic Quarterly Auction Market Review (June 2017) revealing clearance rates across the combined capital cities fell from 74.8% over the first quarter of 2017 to 71.7% at the end of the June quarter.

Clearance rates in Sydney and Melbourne, which were the busiest markets accounting for 84% of all scheduled auctions, fell 4.6 and 2.7 percentage points respectively. Overall, 9,990 more auctions were scheduled nationally in the June quarter compared to the March quarter.

CoreLogic research analyst Cameron Kusher said, “Auction popularity shows no signs of waning, particularly in the investor heartland of Sydney and Melbourne. But while it hasn’t been unusual for properties to vastly exceed the reserve in a booming market, the latest data indicates that it could be time for sellers to adjust their expectations.”

Despite the clearance rates across the combined capitals falling by 3.1 percentage points over the June quarter, the CoreLogic Quarterly Auction Market Review shows that the market is faring better than it was last year in terms of volume and performance.

Clearance rates were 3.8 percentage points higher nationally in the June quarter 2017 than they were 12 months ago, with all capital cities performing better than they were this time last year. There were 29,231 scheduled auctions, an increase of 3,864 on the previous year.

Melbourne strongest auction capital

Nationally, Sydney and Melbourne have been the stand out performers.

“With 13,122 auctions held and a 75.8% clearance rate, Melbourne is currently Australia’s auction hotspot,” said Mr Kusher. “There were 4,458 more auctions taking place in the June quarter compared to the 3 months prior, and despite a minor downturn of 2.7 percentage points on the June quarter, clearance rates are up 4.9 percentage points on this time last year.”

Reservoir, in Melbourne’s North, saw the highest number of auctions while Tullamarine, with a 92.6% clearance rate, became the city’s best performing suburb.

In Sydney, auction volume increased by 2,570 on the previous year. There were 11,458 auctions held over the June quarter, delivering a clearance rate of 73.3% (up 0.7 percentage points year on year). Mosman was the busiest suburb with 165 auctions, while Double Bay had a perfect 100% success rate making it Sydney’s best performing auction market.

Capital city auction clearance rate & volumes:

  • Sydney 73.3 % (11,458 auctions)
  • Melbourne 75.8 % (13,122 auctions)
  • Brisbane 48.8 % (1,760 auctions)
  • Adelaide 64.6 % (1,322 auctions)
  • Perth 37.1 % (530 auctions)
  • Tasmania 52.4 % (107 auctions)
  • Canberra 68.3 % (932 auctions)
  • Combined capitals 71.7 % (29,231 auctions)

Out of all the state capital’s, Perth had the weakest auction market in the June quarter with a 37.1% clearance rate from the 530 scheduled auctions. Despite being the third busiest market (after Sydney and Melbourne) with 1,760 auctions taking place, Brisbane only managed to secure a 48.8% clearance success rate

Highest number of auctions for the quarter across capital city suburbs:

  • Melbourne: Reservoir 184
  • Sydney: Mosman 165
  • Brisbane: Sunnybank Hills 37
  • Canberra: Ngunnawal 27
  • Adelaide: Norwood 33
  • Perth: East Perth 17

Highest clearance rate for the quarter by capital city suburbs: Sydney: Double Bay 100.0%

  • Melbourne: Tullamarine 96.2%
  • Brisbane: Camp Hill 75.9%
  • Canberra: Kaleen 80.0%
  • Adelaide: Norwood 51.7%

Geelong retains regional top spot with 75.8% auction clearance rate

Regionally, the quarterly downward trend continued, impacting four out of the five regional cities monitored by CoreLogic.

The Sunshine Coast, with 471 auctions, fared the worst with a 5.1 percentage point decline in auction sales over the June quarter to 47.3%.

Wollongong was the only regional city to experience an increase in the auction clearance rate over the June quarter, up almost one percentage point to 70.4 per cent, but it still couldn’t catch up with Geelong, which retained the top spot for strongest performing non-capital city region despite a slight downturn in clearance rates of 1.8 percentage points.

“Both Geelong and the Hunter Valley have seen a marked improvement in clearance rates over the past 12 months, up 10.2 percentage points and 9.2 percentage points respectively,” Mr Kusher said.

The Gold Coast was the busiest non-capital city market, with 770 auctions held, up from 751 over the previous quarter, and almost on a par with 774 auctions at the same time last year.

For further detail and analysis, see the CoreLogic Quarterly Auction Market Review (June 2017) .