Clearance rate hits three-year low over December quarter

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The cooling of Australia’s property market has been illustrated by auction results from the 2015 December quarter.

According to research from CoreLogic RP Data, auction volumes rose 15% over the quarter as the average clearance rate across Australia's capital cities fell to 62.1% compared to 73.4% over the September quarter.

The December quarter’s average capital city clearance rate is Australia’s lowest since 2012.

Tim Lawless, research head at CoreLogic RP Data, said the weakened clearance rate had been driven by results in Sydney, as the harbour city saw its average clearance rate fall below 60%.

“The final results for the year further indicate that much of the overall weakness across the auction market can be attributed to the weakening performance across Sydney’s auction market where the clearance rate averaged 59.8% over the quarter compared with a more resilient result of 67.8% in Melbourne,” Lawless said.

“Despite the lower capital cities clearance rate, on a city-by-city basis, Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra and Melbourne all recorded a higher clearance rate in the December 2015 quarter, relative to the same period one year ago, albeit only slightly in some cities,” he said.

Across the quarter, Melbourne was home to the suburb with the highest individual clearance rate, with Hoppers Crossing in the city’s south west returning an average clearance rate of 97.5% for the three-month period.

Drummoyne, in Sydney’s inner west was the next best performer, with an average clearance rate of 89.4%.

Of the larger regional markets, Victoria’s Geelong was the best performer with an average clearance rate of 64.2% over the quarter.

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