Property for sale couple
Brisbane agents are reporting record prices. Photo – Stock image.
  • Brisbane house listings are at record lows
  • There is a perfect storm of macroeconomic factors driving record high demand
  • This extreme imbalance is creating the hottest seller's market ever seen

Given the record low stock levels in the Brisbane housing market, it would seem that the popular perception is that it is a bad time to sell right now.

But, on the ground, agents are seeing record numbers at open homes; offers by interstate buyers sight-unseen; and record prices being achieved. One colleague had 390 buyer inspections just last week alone.

What’s going on?

A perfect storm

It will surprise many to learn that there is a perfect storm right now. It is making this the hottest seller’s market maybe ever seen. Many real estate colleagues in the business for over 25 years have never seen such an extreme imbalance of supply versus demand in the Brisbane housing market.

Is this hype or are there clear macroeconomic factors driving this?

An extreme supply:demand imbalance

The demand side of the equation is being overloaded by a range of drivers at unprecedented levels including:

  • 446,000+ returning expats to Australia since March 2020;
  • Queensland winning 7,200+ interstate migrants per quarter, and growing;
  • 0.1% RBA cash rate;
  • 5 times higher household savings levels than 2018/19;
  • 85% positive or neutral property market sentiment;
  • $3.8bn new home loan commitments for owner occupiers.

Many of these are economic impacts triggered and magnified by COVID-19 and it would seem that it has equally had an effect on the supply side. Creating paralysis and uncertainty in would-be sellers, some suburbs in Brisbane are at half long-term listing levels.

Of course, most of Australia is experiencing a similar supply:demand imbalance but Brisbane is benefiting more than most from strong interstate migration. Sydney and Melbourne home owners can cash out their huge property prices, move up north, purchase great properties and still have substantial funds left over.

The impact of some of these factors may linger while others may be fleeting as the country recovers. The imbalance will certainly only endure while sellers remain hesitant. But, those that are selling right now are enjoying unexpected fruits.

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