Punters return to the market as rates stabilise

April 5, 2024 BY

LocalAgentFinder reports feedback from agents and homeowners indicates a shortage of properties, which in turn seems to be influencing seller activity in the Geelong region.

With rates on hold for now, there seems to be a renewed spring in the step of home buyers and the industry overall appears more optimistic.

Understandably buyers have been a little resistant after initially being told rates would not increase till this year, and to find the opposite happen with gusto.

Now with the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) reining in their relentless pursuit of tighter monetary policy by increasing the cash rate, home buyers are returning to the market, but still a little gun-shy from previous broken promises.

Following the market closely, LocalAgentFinder report that the Australian real estate scene has been nothing short of resilient and dynamic, navigating through the economic swings of the past 18 months with remarkable agility.

They confirm that with 2024 already travelling along at a swift pace, and as we move further into the autumn selling season, they are seeing a significant uptick in seller-agent engagements.

LocalAgentFinder chief executive officer Richard Stevens said this was not just numbers talking but could be seen as a clear sign of the growing optimism among sellers.

“This is being fuelled by stabilised interest rates on the back of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s announcement to hold on rates for a second time this year and a renewed eagerness from buyers.

“It’s not just a good time to sell; it’s potentially the best time the market has seen in a while.”

The Greater Geelong region has seen impressive Year-on-Year growth, particularly in the first quarter of 2024.

Compared to the same time last year, homeowners registering with LocalAgentFinder have increased by an impressive 80%, with their data continuing to show strong performance as we now head into Q2.

Mr Stevens said Greater Geelong was now ranked second among all regions based on total homeowners registering with LocalAgentFinder, clearly showing just how attractive the area is for real estate activity.

“When it comes to seller engagements, the area has experienced a massive 92% YoY growth in Q1-2024, indicating a strong market for those looking to sell.

“Similar growth trends have been seen in the Surf Coast, albeit on a smaller scale.

“Feedback from agents and homeowners indicates a shortage of properties, which in turn seems to be influencing seller activity.

“This tightening of inventory highlights the impact of increased seller activity on market dynamics for potential buyers, including quicker sales, higher sale prices, and increased negotiating power for sellers.”

Historically, autumn has been a period of keen activity in the Australian property market.

It’s a season characterised by mild weather across the majority of the country, which not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of listing properties during this time but also attracts a larger pool of prospective buyers.

Mr Stevens said this pointed to a shift in market dynamics.

“Analysis of our data is showing the early signs of increased engagements between sellers and agents, signalling a market filled with opportunities.

“Sellers are smartly positioning themselves to take advantage of the market’s momentum. “The situation varies by city, reflecting a generally positive market sentiment, Sydney has experienced a significant surge in seller engagements by 56.1 per cent, and Melbourne has seen a notable increase of 48.1 per cent.”

For sellers, recent shifts in the market landscape now place greater emphasis on understanding your specific needs and what sets your property apart.

Understanding what you need and identifying what makes your property stand out is now more important than ever in deciding when to jump into the market, LocalAgentFinder says.

“This is where a good agent becomes your best ally, they’re not just there to list your house; they’re there to help you figure out the best time to sell, considering both the market’s rhythm and your unique situation,” Mr Stevens said.

“Working closely with your agent is key- they help blend the right timing with understanding your needs to steer you towards a sale.”