Property Listing Shortfall Squeezes Prices


Residential stock is being cleared out nationwide as the number of buyers outstrips sellers and listings continue to fall.

Property listings fell 6.3 per cent in May and are down 19.2 per cent on last year, according to data from SQM Research.

The low level of stock is continuing to squeeze the market with house prices rising in all capital cities and regional areas.

Old stock on the market is also getting moved—the number of properties on the market for more than 180 days was down 44 per cent on the year and by 9.2 per cent in May.

Total property listings

CityMay 2021Monthly ChangeYearly Change

^Source: SQM Research May 2021

SQM Research managing director Louis Christopher said property listings fell in May due to strong market conditions.

“The downward trend in old listings suggests strong absorption rates, so new property listings are not completely offsetting the falls in old listings,” Christopher said.

“This is indicating there are more buyers than sellers in the market, which is fuelling the property boom.

“This is contributing to strong growth in asking prices, particularly in regional and coastal locations, such as the NSW Mid North Coast and on the Gold Coast.

“The trend is also pronounced in the inland regions, such as the Murray Region.”

Christopher said with interest rates looking set to remain low for 2021, and many households awash with cash as the jobless rate continues to fall, SQM expected to see sustained gains in house prices for the rest of the year.

This week, the Reserve Bank of Australia decided to keep the cash rate at 0.10 per cent for the seventh month in a row.

“Housing markets have strengthened further, with prices rising in all major markets,” the bank said.

“Housing credit growth has picked up, with strong demand from owner-occupiers, especially first-home buyers. There has also been increased borrowing by investors.

“Given the environment of rising housing prices and low interest rates, the bank will be monitoring trends in housing borrowing carefully and it is important that lending standards are maintained.”

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