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Why it’s a good time to buy property in Sydney

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HOUSE hunters have a narrow window of opportunity this month to nab homes at lower prices and without the usual stiff competition.

Real estate experts say there is a glut of properties that have streamed on to the market in recent weeks while buyer activity has begun to wane, finally taking pressure off buyers to offer higher prices.

Investors have also been disappearing from the market since banks began restricting access to investment loans.

There has been a fall in buyer activity due to first home buyers holding off purchases until new stamp duty exemptions take effect on July 1.

But analysts said softer competition for properties could be temporary and quickly followed by a spike in prices.


Starr Partners chief executive Douglas Driscoll said first home buyers would flood back into the market come July when stamp duty exemptions on homes priced below $650,000 and discounts on properties under $800,000 would become available.

The bump in activity would push up prices in the short-term, he added.

“There’ll be more buyers competing for cheaper homes and opportunistic vendors will capitalise by setting their prices higher.”

An increase in prices would reverse the current slowdown in Sydney’s housing market — CoreLogic research showed the median home price fell 1.3 per cent last month and 0.1 per cent over April.

“Those who want to buy in the next few weeks, especially those who are looking to move into something bigger or downsize, will have it easier,” he said.

“They’ll find there are less other buyers coming through open homes, less bidders at auction and sellers won’t get the big prices they were once getting.”


SQM Research director Louis Christopher said current buyers were being aided by a nine per cent annual increase in established housing stock available for sale and a long pipeline of new homes being built.

“There’s certainly less competition among buyers now than there was last year,” Mr Christopher said, adding that stock levels were near record lows earlier this year and in 2016.

“Last year, lots of homeowners were holding off sales waiting to see what the market would do but they’re finally selling now because they think we’re at the top of the market.”

CoreLogic analyst Cameron Kusher said the bump in listings would throw home buyers a lifeline.

“(It) should result in more choice and less urgency for buyers, which should help to muffle the high pace of capital gains,” he said.

Erin Vaiotu, 26, and husband Francis, 31, were among the first home buyers to benefit from the changed conditions.

The couple spent almost a year looking for a property in the Camden area but finally managed to sign contracts on a three-bedroom house last week.

“It was extremely competitive when we first started looking,” Mrs Vaiotu said.

“You’d see the same people at every open home and the properties would sell after just one viewing.

“It’s a relief that our persistence paid off in the end.

“We finally got a home in our budget that we really liked.”