Source: David McBee from Pexels.
  • Westpac research shows 35% of homeowners plan to sell in the next 5 years
  • Low interest rates and improving confidence contribute to surging house prices
  • The research also shows big changes in Australian property aspirations

As reported on The Property Tribune, low-interest rates, improved consumer sentiment, and forecasts for strong economic growth have all contributed to the surge in housing prices.

And with the Reserve Bank of Australia remaining ‘dovish’ (as opposed to ‘hawkish’) on monetary policy, the property boom looks set to continue for some time.

With increased demand running well ahead of supply, 35% of homeowners across Australia are planning to sell in the next five years according to research released yesterday from Westpac.

This uplift shows an increase of more than double the number of homeowners planning to sell prior to COVID-19 (compared to selling intentions data from last quarter).

The research included surveys of 2,086 Australians aged 18+ distributed across capital and non-capital cities between 15-22 February 2021.

“It is absolutely a seller’s market at the moment. Sales have seen a big lift over the last four months and are up over 36 percent a year ago, resulting in a significant tightening in supply with listings across the major capital cities now at a 12-year low.

“The research suggests the situation will rebalance in coming months as more sellers come onto the market, however, demand is still expected to remain strong, driving a sustained lift in prices this year and next.”

Matt Hassan, Senior Economist of Westpac

Despite this increase, the research found more than half (51%) say they’re actively holding off from listing their property straight away (strong confidence in a low-interest-rate environment likely gives homeowners the impression of a long upward trend in prices, hence waiting for even further appreciations in value).

The majority (87%) of homeowners intend to make upgrades in preparation for sale. They expect to invest around $32,000 for covering things like minor repairs (44%), fresh paint (44%), and upgrading a kitchen (19%) or bathroom (19%).

Westpac’s Managing Director of Mortgages, Anthony Hughes, said there has been a big shift in Australian property aspirations over the last 12 months.

“Home ownership preferences have evolved since the start of the pandemic, with Australians seeking more space, peace and quiet, as well as properties which offer outdoor living like backyards and balconies.

“This is fuelling buyer demand and motivating more Australians to think about selling their current property so they can purchase a new home to better meet their future needs.”

Anthony Hughes, Managing Director of Mortgages at Westpac

Homeowners anticipate their property will be listed for about five weeks, with half expecting a private sale.

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