THE BLANKETY BLANKS OF PROPERTY !!

THE BLANKETY BLANKS OF PROPERTY !!

One of the most consistent issues facing the real estate industry today is that statistical information still remains in the past. RP Data has been active of late where it asks subscribing agents to advise recent sales as soon as they exchange. Competitor, Australian Property Monitors, a business owned by Fairfax Media, is marginally more advanced with its Home Price Guide. Today, we are only provided accurate market analysis based on settlements which usually occur after four or six weeks, or can be four and six months later. If you take the Sydney market for example, Fairfax Media has a domination of print and online with its respective brands – yet its collection of data is nowhere near as well resourced.

The internet is a source of information yet, with property statistics, it remains a source of confusion and misinformation. In an online article that appeared on Business Day – “The information on property prices is confusing buyers and sellers. John Collett crunches the numbers.” Mr Collett wrote on April 4, 2007. “To show how contradictory that data can be, take Melbourne. The Australian Bureau of Statistics said house prices in the Victorian capital grew by 8.1 per cent over 2006. RP Data says prices grew a modest 5.6 per cent; Australian Property Monitors says it was a very ho – hum 3.1 per cent. And then there is Residex, which gives Melbourne an upbeat 9 per cent.” Take you pick, as what this simply identifies is that data measurements are conflicting arguments. However with this information highway, one can well expect to be told to turn around as it appears that many are headed in the wrong direction. So easy to correct, yet so confused. If applied correctly, property data could be available on exchanged sales by June 30, 2007.

With interest I chased data this week on Mosman house sales in 2006 as each month the total number of sales is adjusted. I was surprised to see that RP Data has the total Mosman house sales at 395 which is the highest volume of sales in seven years.

2002 – 392 house sales
2003 – 376 house sales
2004 – 309 house sales
2005 – 291 house sales
2006 – 395 house sales
2007 – 78 house sales – so far

Just as interesting is that the median sale price from 2002 – $1,690,000, 2003 – $1,699,500, 2004 – $1,640,000, 2005 – $1,860,000, 2006 – $1,900,000. Given the current market conditions, we can expect the median sale price to break the $2,000,000 barrier in 2007.

Rents are on the rise according to the 2007 Federal Budget. More appropriate would be that rents are out of control. Although the latest online report by Dyson Austen revealed this week “The Sydney vacancy rate for residential property within a 10 kilometre radius of the Sydney CBD has increased from the previous recorded month’s result of 1.1 % in March 2007 to 1.3% in April 2007. In comparison to the result of April 2006 of 1.9 % to 1.3 % in April 2007 there has been a 0.6 % decrease. In comparison to results of 2.4 % in April 2005, there has been a 1.1 % decrease.”

No point in including houses in this data as the NSW government has taxed property owners out of this market with Land Tax. Investors left the property market and are in no hurry to return despite growing rental return. However those already in the market, are cheering up.

The confusion in the property market today is a direct result of the procrastination in delivering immediate sales data. All suburbs have multiple franchise offices that return monthly property sales so this data is readily available for consumers. All that is required is that the code be broken – these are the “fair facts”. Cheers ^__^

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