It’s not all doom and gloom in the property market, many million-dollar properties have sold since the COVID-19 restrictions began and property experts are predicting the market will hold steady.
According to the Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA), most major property markets are well-placed to withstand the coronavirus crisis.
PIPA Chairman Peter Koulizos said the many financial support programs available would help to prevent any significant property price falls over the medium-term.
“Whenever there is a global financial shock, some commentators predict huge property price falls, which ultimately don’t happen,” Mr Koulizos said.
“During the GFC, prices were ‘forecast’ to fall by 30 per cent, but in many locations they held their ground and even strengthened over the months and years afterwards.
“While the coronavirus situation is somewhat different, given it’s a temporary public health emergency, I believe property prices may temporary soften by five to 10 per cent at most but rebound relatively quickly.”
Mr Koulizos said that most property markets were experiencing strong conditions before the pandemic, which would help to insulate them over coming months.
Compared to other economic downturns, existing low interest rates and inflation will also protect property markets, he said.
Property group Ray White says they have experienced a 19 per cent surge in buyers clicking on its networks’ sites.
Ray White Group Managing Director Dan White said the group as a whole “is selling more than we are listing”.
“Listings have dropped but buyer numbers haven’t. Life in isolation has seen a spike in online traffic from consumers interested in property, tips, agent advice and rentals,” Mr White said.
“Appraisals can be undertaken safely under Level 3 restrictions, and we have a range of safe ways for potential vendors to come to capitalise on the fact that there is little competition from other investment markets.
“We know people are looking and interest rates won’t get much cheaper.
This news was no surprise to Philip Kelly who owns Ray White Castle Hill. His team of 14 sales agents have exchanged on a record number properties in Castle Hill since March 31.
“The area has always been in high demand as it’s a big suburb and it has a good range of stock across estates and more established areas. We have everything from first home buyer stock to luxury homes plus a growing unit market,” he said.
“We’re putting our success down to our virtual auctions. We started planning on going virtual at least three weeks before the Prime Minister banned social gatherings and auctions, so we were ready.”
In fact, Ray White Castle Hill sold 69 Chepstow Drive, Castle Hill for $1.310 million in a super short five day auction campaign three weeks ago on March 31.
“There were four registrations and we sold under the hammer as one of the first online auctions. I actually think the online auctions are here to stay,” Mr Kelly said.
“We had another example at Cherrybrook where not 30 minutes before the auction a bidder was keen to register but would not have made the drive time to get to an on-site but as it was online, it was totally fine.”
“As buyers are not spending their Saturdays on the road attending open homes, benefiting from virtual tours and video streaming, their criteria is also changing as a result of working remotely. Consequently there is a measurable shift as social drivers are changing their requirements.”
McGrath also recorded some outstanding sales throughout its network.
Alex Jordan of McGrath Paddington (QLD) has transacted eight prestige properties since the COVID-19 restrictions.
Mr. Jordan explained: “While the market is slower than usual, there are several reasons why people continue to transact. People want to take advantage of the low-interest rates where the buying power is far greater than it has been for a long time.
“Most of my clients are buying for lifestyle and family reasons and in most cases are upgraders buying and selling in the same market.
Western Advocate, Bathurst, Page 14, 21 May 2020
Central Western Daily, Orange, Page 13, 21 May 2020