2021: breaking records and boosting confidence

Records were shattered last month with February recording the highest ever auction clearance rate for the month of February in Victoria.

Real Estate Institute of Victoria data shows that February 2021 recorded an 84.8 per cent clearance rate from more than 3000 auctions. It’s the highest rate in 11 years, beating out an old 2010 record with an 84.0 per cent clearance rate.

While lockdowns, international border closures, and tightened purse strings have affected many markets, it has not spelled disaster for the Victorian property market as many doomsayers said it would.

Some 17 suburbs were a hot commodity last month, having cleared 100 per cent of listings. Suburbs included Hawthorn East, Fitzroy North, Ferntree Gully, Rowville, Brunswick East, Sandringham, Seaford, Collingwood, Ashburton, Blackburn South, Fawkner, Wantirna, Boronia, Fairfield, Hillside, Seddon, and St Kilda West.

Reservoir, Coburg, and Bentleigh East beat out the rest to land as the top selling auction suburbs for February 2021, clearing 44, 37, and 35 auctions respectively, while 11 suburbs at least doubled their auction sales compared to same month in 2020.

The best improvements on last year are in Sunshine North, Dingley Village, Gladstone Park, Ashwood, Albert Park, Fitzroy North, Doncaster, St Kilda West, Montmorency, Hoppers Crossing, and Templestowe.

This year’s performance has been boosted by support measures such as incentives for First Home Buyers, mortgage repayment holidays, and low interest rates. High demand across the state has also been fuelled by an increase in activity following Victoria’s devastating lockdowns which saw thousands of auctions cancelled.

While the times are ripe for Victoria’s property market, there will be pain ahead for mum-and-dad investors. Changes to the Residential Tenancy Act coming into effect at the end of this month will disrupt the market with more red-tape and increased ownership costs.

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