It’s what we thought but now its confirmed, Perth property sales lifted in February. Whether it’s a blip or a trend remains to be seen, but our sense is that buyers might be thinking that the market now is pretty much as low as its going to get, and that now might be a good time to trade up or buy.
Whilst the median price has been reported as having slipped since the beginning of the year to $529,000, following a slight uplift for the December quarter, the total number of properties listed for sale is lower now than it was back in November when it peaked at nearly 17,000, to be around 15178 as of the 8th of March. The rental market continues to suffer, with 55% more properties available to rent now than at the same time last year.
Negative consumer sentiment continues to influence the market, as does the slowing migration rate which has clearly impacted the demand for housing (and subsequently rents and selling prices) since the end of 2013. The low cost of debt seems to be mitigating some of the more negative market conditions and if unemployment remains relatively steady or increases minimally and the local economy stays in status quo, I think we’ll see a bottoming out of the market and a return to modest growth hopefully in the not too distant future. Those waiting for the next boom though are likely to be waiting a very long while.
My opinion in a nutshell? Get used to a fickle market being the new norm.