The property market across Sydney and the eastern suburbs has continued to rise, even though the past three months of lockdown.
The median Sydney property price rose 1.8% over the month of September and 5.7% over the quarter, according to CoreLogic data. That means the median Sydney property was worth 23.6% more than the same time last year and 22.0% more than on 1 January.
We’ve noticed a level of confidence in the inner eastern suburbs and eastern beaches real estate markets that not even the current COVID-19 restrictions can shake. If anything, lockdown seems to have made many people more assertive when it comes to securing a property. We’ve noticed this is especially true for many people who’ve been working from home for the best part of 18 months and now find they would like more space for a home office or to accommodate the family.
Lifestyle properties the real risers
For this reason, we’ve seen particularly strong activity in the housing market. The median Sydney house price rose even more than the median dwelling price last month, lifting 2.0% compared to a 1.5% rise for unit prices.
We’re noticing a lot of interest in lifestyle properties, especially on the eastern beaches, and this is driving prices in these suburbs up faster than even the Sydney median. The median house price in Bronte lifted an incredible 37.1% between the start of the year and 30 August, rising from $3.5 million to $4.8 million, according to realestate.com.au.
In September, we sold two Bronte properties for more than $7 million each – 25 Evans Street and 494 Bronte Road – both were hotly contested and really demonstrated the high level of demand we’re seeing for life near the beach.
That said, we’re also seeing strong interest in inner-city apartments, townhouses and terraces that can also offer enough space for people to spread out. This means the premium end of the apartment market has been outperforming other segments. For instance, in July 2021, CT30/184 Forbes Street, Darlinghurst sold for $6.6 million.
Auction clearance rates remain high
One thing that we’ve found interesting is just how differently this lockdown has impacted the property market compared to the one in 2020. In May 2020, the number of listings dried up, auction rates plummeted and prices ultimately fell.
This time around, not only are we seeing prices rise, we’re seeing more real estate activity rather than less. The property market continues to tighten. The Sydney-wide auction clearance rate sat at 85% at the end of September, according to Domain. Meanwhile, the Wentworth Courier put the auction clearance rate in the eastern suburbs as high as 95%.
With this level of demand still in the market, it’s likely that price growth will continue – unless of course external factors such as an interest rate rise or government action intervene.
Speaking of which, on 30 September, The Sydney Morning Herald ran an article which suggested that APRA may step in to cool the property market by forcing banks to tighten their lending criteria. However, the same article suggests that any action taken is likely to be ‘modest’.
What to expect from the market
Our view is that the current conditions have some way to run. And, despite 2021’s record price growth, we believe there are still some genuinely good buys available.
As we wrote a little while ago, one-bedroom apartments in inner city areas such as Potts Point represent particularly good value – not least because current low interest rates mean there is often very little difference in the cost between buying and renting. This is great news for first home buyers, as well as investors.
We also see the current market as presenting a great opportunity for downsizers.
Median Property Price
According to realestate.com.au, the median property prices in our area at the end of the August 2021 were:
- Potts Point units $870,000
- Elizabeth Bay units $950,000
- Woolloomooloo units $1,510,000
- Rushcutters Bay units $775,500
- Darlinghurst units: $1,105,000; and houses: $1,900,000
- Bronte units: $1,370,000; and houses $4,800,000
- Bondi Beach units: $1,320,000; and houses $3,550,000
- Coogee units: $1,310,000; and houses $3,180,000
- Maroubra units: $913,000; and houses $2,420,000
If you’re looking to buy or sell in Potts Point or Sydney’s eastern beaches contact my team today.