Overall, the market experienced a slow turnover rate closing out 2018 with the recorded number of sales down across numerous key sectors. Many agencies, including our own offices, have carried un-sold stock over the Christmas break and into the New Year. In recent years, we've found January to be one of the slowest months as many prospective purchasers and sellers alike are taking advantage of the break, including the school holidays during this period.
This has somewhat remained the case (in 2019), however a number of properties have bucked the trend this year – e.g. 16 Wood Street, Eastwood showed a notable increase in traffic. This property was previously marketed by another agent/cy for the better of the end half of 2018, with the vendor reporting average open home numbers to be in the single digits. We were proud to have been engaged to take over this listing in 2019 and it was put to market on the 16th of January (this year) by David Johnson and Leighton Avery with a re-branded and refreshed marketing strategy/campaign.
To the months end of January, we saw a huge number of prospective purchasers attend our inspection/s, with 67 buyer inspections spread over two separate Saturday's and two mid-week open homes, this resulted in 19 contract requests. The property is scheduled to be sold under the hammer on Saturday 16th February at 9:30am (on-site).
16 Wood Street, Eastwood - pictured above
Moving over to the strata property market | units and apartments; we've seen a notable increase in seller activity, however this space has not been adequately matched with active purchasers. We anticipate this sector to remain under pressure for the foreseeable future. Taking a closer look at the Meadowbank/Ryde market, there are a number of larger projects nearing completion in the first half of 2019, many properties of which we believe have been purchased off the plan as early as 2014. This has resulted in an oversupply for the local market and competition is fierce.
Following discussions with a number of valuers over the past few weeks (as buyers are looking to finalise their loans prior to settlement), it would appear that many banks/valuers will fail to support off-the-plan purchase prices and this may lead to an increased number of buyer defaults. Time will tell…
Our Market Predictions Moving Forward
Early signs are pointing to increased buyer activity in the local housing market following sharp declines in 2018, with unit/apartment prices looking to remain under pressure due to increased stock levels, tighter lending requirements and low investor activity.