Is there a shortage of properties for sale

20 February 2024

"New listings are still coming to the market in reasonable numbers, but they are selling incredibly fast."

At the end of January there were 3,738 properties advertised for sale on A year ago, there were 7,104. Five years ago there were 16,571.

Is there shortage of homes for sale? It might look like it, but the answer is no.

The number of properties advertised on only tells part of the picture. It represents active listings, those properties that are advertised for sale at any one point in time. It varies day to day as new properties are listed and properties are sold.

Properties are still coming to the market in good numbers. This can be shown by the number of sales in 2023. There were 56,434 settled sales of houses, units and land in Perth last year. This was actually 1.2 per cent higher than 2022.

New listings are still coming to the market in reasonable numbers, but they are selling incredibly fast. According to data, houses sold in a median of 9 days in January. Units sold in a median of 13 days.

The sheer speed of sales is what is keeping active listings very low. Essentially, almost as soon as a property is listed, it sells.

What does this mean for buyers? Firstly, don’t be discouraged by the numbers, homes are still coming to the market, but you will need to be patient and persistent.

However, when you start looking for a home, you do need to be ready to act.

You need to have had a serious chat with your bank or broker to know how much you can borrow. Your finances need to be in order so you can make an offer when you see a home you like.

You also need to be ready to make quick decision. This is not the market where you can think about ‘circling back’ in a week or two. By then the home will probably have sold.

Now is also not the time for a ‘cheeky offer’. You are likely to face a lot of competition from other buyers, so you do need to put your best foot forward. This relates to the price, but it can also refer to the conditions. Speak to the agent, the seller may look favourably on a buyer who will accept a longer settlement or be willing to rent the home back to them while they look for a new home.

Finding a new home in this market is challenging, so why not engage the services of a REIWA buyer’s agent to do the legwork for you. Yes, a fee is involved, but they can save you time and remove some of the stress from the process.

Joe White
REIWA President

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