Sell, Buy or Both?  Your Property Snapshot for 2009

Sell, Buy or Both? Your Property Snapshot for 2009

While Robert takes a well earned Winter break, I’ll step into the chair this week and give you a break from the politics and the stats and talk directly about the market from the coal face.

In a year or two will you look back over the last 12 months and realise you’ve lost an opportunity? Only time will tell. Let’s reflect briefly on the facts and move forward, based on evidence and current trends. On reflection, over the last 12 months, buyers were initially and justifiably seeking their revenge against property prices that had become inflated. By mid 2008, they were trying to pick the bottom of the market and by the end of 2008, the vast majority of buyers had decided not to purchase, unsure of whether we were entering into a deep recession. Those that were not adversely affected by the GFC (Global Financial Crisis) sat back in the hope of further price drops and more choice as ‘distressed’ properties came onto the market.

Tim Mooney Photography

The first quarter of 2009 was disappointing for longer term purchasers as they saw prices starting to stabilise, while low stock levels remained. By the second quarter, sentiment was starting to pick up and buyers revisited the stock that had not sold. This resulted in a doubling of weekly inspection numbers compared to previous months. In May–June we sold 80% of our entire stock – $61,000,000 worth of property and 90% of the prices achieved were in-line with, or above, vendor expectations. There were no ‘fire-sales’. These results speak for themselves and the property sales ranged from $2m re-builds to $8m residences.

As I talked with and gave advice to a continual line of vendors and purchasers, a few trends emerged. Discerning vendors, although not pressured to sell, had taken this as an opportunity to sell first, then re-buy in a softer market thus realising a greater financial upside than if they traded up in a ‘bull-market’. Those purchasers who were cashed-up and wanting to move forward with their lives have been able to secure an ideal property for a realistic price and with less competition than normal. Having said that, the relatively low stock levels meant that purchasers have had less choice and this has assisted in keeping prices stable.

Moving forward, I believe this is a good market for both vendors and purchasers. Australia seems to have weathered the financial turbulence relatively well and we are seeing slightly more desperate purchasers, who have been in the market for up to 12 months, keen to buy in the coming months. Property prices have stabilised and with purchasers wanting to proceed more quickly, the typical ‘days on market’ period for new listings should reduce dramatically.

As school holidays conclude, expect to see some new stock entering the market, but perhaps not at the same volume as in previous years. Vendors who do wish to sell should ideally be planning to sell early in Spring to give them as much time as possible to secure their new property this year, in the same property cycle. Although we are seeing a return of more positive sentiment, cash is still king, so take advantage and buy in the coming months (although we still predict stock levels will remain well under demand).

Many of our clients use us as “real estate advisors,” whether they are looking to sell or buy. As with any good investment advisor, our focus is to help you plan for your long term success, in line with your expectations and ideals. We assist, educate and empower every purchaser to proceed, and, at the same time, focus on exceeding the expectations of our vendors. This results in a win for both parties.

So whether you plan to sell, buy, or both, we wish you well in the coming months and hope to see many of you out there in the market. If you need a sounding board or constructive property advice, we would be delighted to contribute to your knowledge base, so don’t hesitate to pick up the phone.

Kind regards,

Richard Simeon

For this week’s recorded Mosman real estate, Cremorne real estate, Neutral Bay real estate and Cammeray real estate sales

Here is a link to a property portal survey that only takes about thirty seconds to complete Your participation would be very much appreciated.

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