Melbourne’s property market could be set for a major hit as vendors consider pulling properties from the market during the coronavirus crisis.
Sellers are already holding off from listing their homes, while those with properties already on the market face the possibility of cancelled auctions and stagnated campaigns.
Full Circle Property Advocates director Rob German said most people who wanted to sell would “probably hold off”, but those who had already listed should push on at this stage.
“Buyers are still out there … I do believe there’s always going to be a segment of the market that’s active and that will help prices hold firm, although huge gains won’t be seen,“ Mr German said.
“But I think vendors with auction plans would be mad to not seriously consider a pre-auction offer, especially if it’s within their price expectations.
“Those who had plans to list in May should probably reassess in about three or four weeks.”
A drop in group numbers at inspections could help agents weed out genuine buyers, he added.
Real Estate Institute of Victoria president Leah Calnan said there had been no sign of a market slowdown yet, but the situation could change quickly.
“If there is to be a decrease in the number of properties available, we don’t anticipate it for another two or three months because of marketing campaign cycles,” Ms Calnan said.
“Whether people are still looking to sell their home will depend on individual circumstances … like whether they are being personally impacted by the issue.”
CoreLogic analyst Kevin Brogan said Australia’s housing market proved “pretty resilient” during other events like the global financial crisis.
“It’s certainly possible a market recovery might occur reasonably quickly once (the coronavirus crisis) has passed,” Mr Brogan said.
“But the duration is difficult to measure; it really depends on the effectiveness of the measures being taken now.”
Nelson Alexander Fitzroy director Arch Staver said it was normal to have a drop in supply during April because of the Easter and ANZAC Day long weekends. He said some of his vendors were “a little anxious” about their sales prospects, but it may not be all bad news.
“With less stock, it could be an advantage to sell while there isn’t as much available to buyers,” Mr Staver said.
“As long as vendors keep their price expectations realistic, they can expect to sell.”