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Breaking waves in the auction market

By Rich Harvey, CEO, propertybuyer.com.au

National auction clearance rates hit their highest mark in five months last week with Sydney's flourishing property market once again leading the charge.

In his weekly RP Data report, auction spokesperson Robert Larocca noted that the 70.8 per cent national clearance rate was bolstered by the excellent 76.2 per cent rate in Sydney, and a 73.3 per cent result for Melbourne.

Over the year to date, the commitment to buying property in Sydney has stayed ardent, with 74 per cent of more than 22,000 auctions ending in a sale. That's roughly 8,000 more auctions than were held by the same point last year, and with a better clearance rate! It is also more than double the number of auctions that Sydney was seeing only five years ago.

Vendors are more frequently choosing auction as their preferred method of sale because there is healthy competition in the Sydney market. We are regularly seeing wounded buyers bidding harder and stronger at each auction they miss out on.  Some home buyers are paying over the odds to put an end to their constant property search.  So it pays to do your homework well in advance to ensure you understand the current market value of the property you are seeking to purchase.

Low interest rates appear to have kept property investors very keen to buy, and the Australian dollar remaining below the American dollar means overseas parties are more enthusiastic about buying investment property in Sydney.

The Harbour City is the traditional leader of the nation in the auction market, with house hunters able to choose from a wide range of inner city apartment units and luxury suburban homes, and everything in between. The wide range of property available every week can be overwhelming - RP Data noted there were nearly 7,000 new home listings in Sydney last week alone!

If you need a guide to help you navigate the twists and turns of the auction market here, a buyers agent is the way to go. They spend every day closely monitoring where auctions go to sale, which properties come in at the best value, and can get your foot in the door on the best property on the market - taking the guesswork out of a constantly moving market.

A good buyers' agent will know the right moves to make at auction and keep emotions in check.  It's easy to get carried away with spirited bidding or be easily led by the auctioneer to make a bid over your limit. Having a professional bid at auction on your behalf can make all the difference on the big day.

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