New listings on the rise – Image: Unsplash
  • New listings rebounded in May but remain lower than last year
  • Hobart, Darwin, and Sydney saw the largest increase in new listings
  • Home prices have consistently increased, improving market sentiment

New listings bounced back in May, however, they are still lower than the same time last year according to a new report.

The PropTrack Listings Report May 2023 found that nationally, new listings on increased 18.7% month-on-month in May.

New listings rose most in Hobart (27%), Darwin (25%) and Sydney (24.6%), however, compared to last year, new listings were down 16.8% across the country.

Despite the lack of new listings, buyers are still enjoying a modest increase in choice with total properties for sale 2.2% higher than April and 3.3% up on a year ago.

There is also more choice than in the second half of 2021 with total listings 10% higher.

Activity bounced back

PropTrack Economist Angus Moore, said activity in property markets bounced back across the country after the slower month in April, when public holidays affected property market activity.

“May continued the trend of slower property market activity in 2023, relative to the pace seen in 2022,” said Moore.

“In part, that reflects just how busy property markets were during the start of 2022.”

“With the autumn selling season now behind us, market activity is likely to be a little slower over the next few months during the typically quieter winter period, before picking up again for spring.”

Angus Moore, PropTrack Economist

Moore said while selling conditions are softer than a year ago, and activity has slowed, market conditions have improved from late 2022.

“Auction clearance rates remained reasonably firm throughout autumn and have picked up noticeably compared to the second half of 2022.”

New and Total Listings

Region Area MoM% YoY% MoM% YoY%
NSW Sydney 24.6% -17.5% 2.8% -11.0%
Regional NSW 16.1% -13.3% 2.5% 29.7%
VIC Melbourne 17.4% -19.0% 1.4% -1.4%
Regional Victoria 15.4% -5.5% 3.7% 41.7%
QLD Brisbane 22.1% -21.3% 1.3% -2.0%
Regional QLD 16.9% -15.7% 2.1% -3.7%
SA Adelaide 16.2% -19.7% 2.5% -0.9%
Regional SA 9.1% -9.2% 2.9% 2.3%
WA Perth 19.5% -23.4% 0.7% -13.6%
Regional WA 23.9% -21.8% 1.7% -9.6%
TAS Hobart 27.0% -6.6% 2.7% 57.8%
Regional TAS 9.5% -3.7% 3.2% 42.0%
NT Darwin 25.0% -13.0% 6.2% 5.0%
Regional NT 3.6% 21.1% 7.3% 3.6%
ACT Canberra 20.7% -8.4% 3.3% 17.6%
National Capital cities 20.5% -19.2% 1.8% -4.9%
Regional areas 16.1% -12.6% 2.7% 13.9%
Total 18.7% -16.8% 2.2% 3.3%

Source: PropTrack.

Hobart remains active

Across the capital cities, new listings were up 20.5% over the month but were down 19.2% compared to May last year.

Both Sydney and Melbourne recorded fewer new listings this May compared to last year, down 17.5% and 19% respectively.

Hobart continued to be one of the more active capital city property markets, but even so, new listings were down 6.6% compared to last year.

While, regional areas also saw new listings bounce back in May, up 16.1% month-on-month.

Market activity has not kept pace with the busy period in 2022 across the regions, with new listings down 12.6% year-on-year.

The increase in total listings has been particularly sharp in regional Victoria and regional NSW. Both regions saw substantially more properties listed for sale in May than they did a year ago, which is providing buyers with more choice after a period of severely limited options during the pandemic said Moore.

He said buyers in Sydney and Melbourne are faced with slightly less choice this year than they had last year, with fewer total properties available for sale in May than a year ago.

This is in part due to fewer new listings hitting the market this year, but it also shows choice for buyers was quite plentiful last year, making this year look softer by comparison.

Sentiment improving

Moore said home prices increased in May for the fifth consecutive month which could help sentiment.

“While the increases have been modest, they have been consistent, and it is a change from the price falls seen throughout much of 2022 when the RBA was raising interest rates rapidly.”

“Further out, the fundamentals of housing demand remain strong.

He said unemployment has also remained close to multi-decade lows for much of 2022 and into 2023.

“Wages growth, while running slower than inflation, has started to pick up, and there are signs inflation is starting to subside.

“International migration has also resumed, which will further add to housing demand, and rental markets are extremely tight across the country.”

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