Professionals Arthur Johnston Snowball
256 York St Albany
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2014 September Quarter Summary
All figures from REIWA market update:
As 2014 draws to a close, it is shaping up to be a year of reasonably stable prices on substantially lower turnover. The Perth market experienced falling house prices for the quarter of -1.8% but still remained positive for the 12 months to end of September with an increase of 3.9%. Regional WA experienced a similar fall for the quarter (-1.3%) with prices unchanged over the 12 month period. Both metropolitan and regional markets had lower sales numbers with turnover falling around 11% across the state.
Albany experienced fairly stable house sales at 529 (up 3%) and house prices – average of $382,500 (up 2%) over the 12 months to the end of September 2014. Land sales fell slightly to 199 sales (down 8%) but the average sale price of land increased sharply by 37% to $205,000.
Compared to other regional centres, Albany has fared well in all respects. It is the only centre to have experienced a higher volume of house sales; as opposed to Augusta/Margaret River – down 23%, Bunbury and Geraldton down 14% and 15% respectively and the worst performer was Kalgoorlie/Boulder down 44% – potentially their lowest sales year since 1989.
Augusta/Margaret River and Busselton performed slightly better than Albany with regard to house prices – both up just over 5%, with the standout being Esperance – up nearly 23%, and the worst performer being Karratha – down 34% for the 12 months.
All major centres experienced reduced number of land sales with the worst results being Augusta/Margaret River down 24% and Busselton down 22%. Albany was by far the standout when it came to land prices (up 37%) with the next best performer being Bunbury (up 17%).
We are currently operating at around 15% below long term sales numbers in Albany. The pattern over the 12 months to end of September sees the number of houses sold peaking in the March quarter and then tapering off in June quarter, with further substantial falls in September quarter on preliminary figures. Land sales also look to be falling substantially in the September quarter. Our stock levels are 9% lower compared to September 2013 and days on market only marginally longer at 120 on average.
REIWA reports that Perth has seen an increase of 25% in stock levels in the six weeks since issuing this report, and likewise we would expect that the last quarter of 2014 will also show a significant boost to stock levels (properties for sale) in Albany, but without a corresponding increase in sales numbers.
On the rental front, the summary is simple; Albany’s rents are up (12% for the 12 months) and available rentals are down – 21% for the 12 months and a whopping 30% for the quarter. This continues to be in total contrast to Perth.
We are hoping that the interest we have seen recently from those considering moving to Albany and those looking to invest here actually translates to an increase in sales in early 2015.