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Melbourne property: Greatest quarterly house price hike since 2000

Originally posted on Hearld Sun

Written by Jayitri Smiles

“Crazy competition” after coronavirus lockdown has spurred on Melbourne’s largest quarterly house price jump since 2000.

A massive 9.5 per cent rise to a $940,000 median was recorded in the three months to December 2020, helping the city achieve an 8.4 per cent annual price hike across the tumultuous year.

Real Estate Institute of Victoria data shows it was the largest quarterly improvement for metropolitan Melbourne in 21 years.

Malvern East, Mount Eliza and Essendon had the greatest house price gains, while Doncaster, Mount Waverley and Bentleigh units also shot to success.

REIV median price data only takes into account properties that sold during the December quarter, rather than the value of all Victorian properties.

REIV president Leah Calnan said the “impressive results” were met by equally strong figures in regional Victoria, where quarterly house prices rose 9.2 per cent to a $485,500 median.

“We’ve achieved this result with borders closed and no international students or arrivals,” Ms Calnan said.

“It demonstrates the strength of the entire Victorian property market.”

Real Estate Buyers Agents Association of Australia president Cate Bakos said runaway results were constantly recorded in the December quarter, which moved at “a frenetic pace”.

“You could feel the market moving every single weekend, with crazy competition at auctions and sales price records being set every Saturday,” Ms Bakos said.

“There were people who had a desire to buy since March coming out of the woodwork and there really wasn’t as much stock as other December quarters.”

A “fear of missing out” saw buyers fork out a premium to secure properties that had only just hit the market, she said.

Coburg vendors Christian Inturrisi and Jessica Saidel said it was “stressful” battling against other buyers for their next home, as prices continued to rise.

“There’s definitely a lot of competition and people are willing to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars above the asking price, which is not ideal in our situation,” Ms Saidel said.

The couple is selling a polished townhouse at 4/25 Bruce Street in Coburg, which was one of the city’s top performing suburbs during the tail end of 2020.

With a baby on the way, they are eyeing a larger home in the suburb or other popular spots like Brunswick and Pascoe Vale South.

Ray White Brunswick selling agent Matthew Schroeder said buyers were looking to capitalise on low interest rates and government schemes, like stamp duty discounts.

“Houses have good amounts of land in Melbourne’s north and people are now willing to pay a premium for a bit of backyard space,” Mr Schroder said.

“Good quality units and townhouses, like the one on Bruce Street, also offer great bang for your buck compared to more premium suburbs.”

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