New listings in Sydney drop by 20pc

Home listings under 30 days have plummeted the most in areas where harder restrictions were imposed, although sellers in other parts of the city have also largely retreated as the lockdown dragged on.

In Parramatta, new total listings fell by 33.4 per cent. They shrank by 30.7 in Liverpool, 29 per cent in Canterbury Bankstown and 21.8 in western Sydney.

In the upper north shore, new listings plunged by 26 per cent; they were down by 23 per cent in the eastern suburbs and by 22.6 per cent in the inner west.

SQM Research managing director Louis Christopher said Sydney listings were likely to remain weak for the remainder of August, with vendors holding off until there was certainty on the end of the current lockdown.

“I think many vendors would be cautious about going into the market under the current conditions as they cannot conduct public open homes and on-site auctions,” he said.

“If we do come out of lockdown by the end of the month, there would be a rush to list in September, as we’ve seen in Melbourne, when the restrictions were lifted there.

“Then we’re likely to see a strong October auction market, as there [is] currently no shortage of buyers.”

Mr Christopher said the recently announced government support packages will likely assist the housing market into spring, but an extended lockdown could be detrimental.

“The longer this lockdown goes on, the more damage it’s going to be doing to the national economy,” he said.

“Notwithstanding government support packages, if we’re still in lockdown in November and going into December, we could go into a double-dip recession.

“This cannot be a good thing for the housing market. It will dent confidence and potentially reverse the turnaround in the housing market.”

In Brisbane, which went into lockdown last Saturday, new listings rose by 2.6 per cent over the month, a sign that vendors were becoming more active in the market, Mr Christopher said.

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