King Charles the Ruiner has gone and ruined something else on this, his somethingest birthday and his first as Stand-in Queen.

With the Aussie property market looking apples all of a sudden, this weekend’s Queen’s Son’s Birthday holiday appears to have done a right number at the wrong time on what should’ve been a swashbuckling weekend of auction action.

Here we go again baby, whispered kindly young property agents, as they tripped lightly into their various cabriolets, checked their teeth in the mirror and screamed off the kerb at 6am to prepare for another cracking weekend of skinning oblivious but honest Aussie home-buyers to within an inch of their Republican-wannabe lives.

Alas. No cigar.

With a potentially enormous majority of our swarthy Republican-leaning Aussies distracted by the immense challenges of being Monarchist For A Day (‘don’t worry, it’s just an Mfad, they’ll be saying’) turns out national auction activity was somewhere around the lowest since Easter.

That’s according to the latest preliminary data from Domain.

I haven’t cross-referenced the figures with CoreLogic or REA, for example, but they look pretty ballpark to me.


These numbers look pretty ballpark to me. And quite pretty. Screenshot: Via Domain

I have however noted the absence of data from Perth, Hobart, Moruya, Wagga Wagga, Useless Loop, WA, Darwin and Ding-a-Ding in Victoria. To name a few.

It’s not a trust thing. Just doing my job.

Yes, the kids might suggest Domain Group (ASX:DHG) is possibly Stockhead’s natural enemy now we’re wandering the fraught jungles of Aussie media with nothing but a a Swiss Army spoon and a big hat saying “We Borp for News Corp,” (we asked them during the zoom call not to go with that tagline.) But since the real estate data platform was spun out of its majority-owner, we’re just fast admirers of their work and like to share its obvious value – in much the same way The AFR is of ours.

According to DHG, around the country going into the Queen’s Son’s weekend, jus 734 domiciles were listed to go under the hammer – down about half on the weekend before.

Royal Consort Camilla-like in its even worseness – Domain says just 486 of those actually went to auction way down on the previous week’s 1,313.

No wait, like having Prince Harry and Megs drop in with a film crew and a bottle of Jack Daniels for family lunch, the total value of property sold last week was barely over $309 million (DHG says houses averaged $1,300,000 a pop and units $860,000).

That’s a right royal scandal compared to the total $921.3 million national property sales reaped a week ago.

Ahh. June 4th and 3rd. Happy times. I surely remember when average national home and flat prices were just $1,292,500 and $815,000 respectively.

Hard to believe that was but seven days and 612.7 million dollars ago.

There’s the Monarchy for you.

Other, less snarky news

In other, less snarky news it does indeed appear that the local housing market has overall dodged the post-COVID bullet so many were expecting.

In fact, new research from PropTrack, suggests home prices might lift by 4% by the end of the year.

According to PropTrack – and before I go on, BTW, these chaps also do fine, fine work and may be a branch of the REA Group, which – if memory serves – could also Borp for News Corp (ASX:NWS).

I’d have to check on that, but since Stockhead has instituted a company-wide ban on Google for not including us in the designated media companies which get paid for content and stuff, well… I don’t know how to.

Anyway PropTrack said last week, that if Aussie home prices were to keep on busting out this burst of price growth at the same pace as over the last three months, then residential property “could return to positive annual growth by July 2023 and surpass their prior peak by January 2024”.

Via PropTrack

Sydney home prices, like the Kings of Old, have quickly rebounded this year, up off their knees by an impressive 3%, from their brief low of November 2022.

New PropTrack numbers suggest that if Sydney home prices were to continue to grow at the same obscenely healthy pace as they have the past quarter, then avg prices could “return to positive annual growth by the end of June and surpass their prior peak by December 2023.” What a city, eh.

Although much less attractive, Canberra and Brisbane have also apparently recorded a badass turnaround in prices.

Brisbane homes are up 2% so far this year the data says, and could be on track to return to positive annual growth by July 2023, surpassing their prior peak by September 2023.

Home prices in Canberra could return to positive annual growth in October 2023, surpassing their previous peak in late 2024.

Perth bucked the falling price trend seen for much of last year, which along with Adelaide hit new highs just last month.

Perth is up 3.1% so far this year, while home prices in Adelaide proved to be post-COVID immune, and have been slapping price peaks for the past eight consecutive months.

They should probably build some new houses out there.

The King’s Breach

Minus the King’s breach over the weekend, the general feeling is property is on the mend.

We’ve got steady inflows of immigration, helping boost population growth. Structurally, the rental market is insanely tight and there’s a big housing shortfall which recent building data suggests will not turnaround anytime soon.

“If stronger demand holds up against the expected slowing of the economy, most capital city markets would return to positive annual price growth in the coming months,” PT says.

Here’s where they left things last week:

“After five months of price growth, stronger market conditions are becoming more widespread in 2023. Housing demand is stronger, likely bolstered by the surge in net overseas migration, as well as very tight rental markets.

“Given limited new stock is coming to market, buyer interest is being concentrated, which is underpinning home prices and offsetting the downward pressure from interest rate rises.

“If the pace of price growth recorded over the past quarter continues, national property prices will surpass their prior peak by January 2024.”


A few riders on the end of that one, though:

  1. Price growth may stumble if stronger market conditions drive seller confidence to spark a boost in new stock coming to market
  2. If interest rates rise further, which could slow the recovery (however PT says interest rates are closer to their peak than not, and the shock of rate rises has lessened.
  3. If the global economy, led by American fiscal hubris breaks everything, everywhere

Actually, full disclosure –  that last one was mine, but I think it’s good for a spot.