As 2018 unfolds we’re starting to see signs of change in the Sydney market.

While the eastern suburbs are still largely protected from any major price drops, in other areas things are changing. Lower auction clearance rates and longer periods on market could mean the recent years of skyrocketing values are coming to a close. But none of this needs to worry sellers who have agent experience on their side. Here’s why you should focus on your agent’s local knowledge if the market is changing.

Negotiation skills matter more

Even slight changes in the market can affect the way potential buyers approach negotiations. The perception of a swing towards higher supply or falling prices can encourage buyers to drive a harder bargain, so your agent’s ability to anticipate and respond to this can make a significant difference to your final sale price. This is particularly true if your property is passed in at auction or in other cases when less buyers are interested or only one buyer is involved in the transaction.

A strong network makes a difference

In a sellers’ market, less experienced agents can easily give the appearance of success through a scattergun approach to marketing a property. But when the market changes, it’s no longer about finding just any buyer. Your agent’s network of contacts – both active buyers and those who are only interested in hearing about off-market opportunities – is crucial for reaching the highest possible sale price.

Local knowledge makes planning easier

Talking about changes in ‘the Sydney real estate market’ is often misleading – broad trends in sale prices or auction clearance rates tell one story, but the reality in your local area can be different altogether. This is why it’s important to work with an agent who understands local trends, not just in terms of a certain suburb, but property types within that suburb as well.

Looking at recent trends for Potts Point and Woolloomooloo, for example, CoreLogic data shows that:

  • Potts Point unit values have remained almost completely steady for the past three years with an average annual growth of 4.99%. This makes them an appealing choice for more cautious investors including downsizers.
  • Houses in Potts Point are extremely tightly held with just a few sales in the past year. This means sellers looking to sell these properties have additional bargaining power, even in a broader buyers’ market.
  • Quarterly growth for Woolloomooloo houses is down 7.14% but average annual growth remains extremely high at 23.89%. Like Potts Point, Woolloomooloo is very tightly held in terms of houses with just 11 sales in the past 12 months compared to 90 sales for units.

Having been through many cycles working in the Potts Point and Woolloomooloo markets, I’ve seen how these traditionally sought-after areas have responded not just to the past few years of rising prices, but to wider shocks like the Global Financial Crisis and periods of much higher interest rates.

Get in touch with our team today to find out more about selling in a changing market.

Article by Jason Boon

In a real estate market that is the focus of Australian, and indeed worldwide attention, Jason Boon's results in the Sydney scene make him a highly significant figure within the industry. A long-term specialist in the Potts Point and inner eastern suburbs area, he is uniquely placed to leverage his skills and local knowledge as the area undergoes significant change and diversification. Jason ha…