Barfoot & Thompson’s sales report for February was a mixed bag, with a substantial increase in the number of properties sold compared to February last year, while prices weakened from what was being achieved over the previous few months.
Barfoot reported sales on 665 residential properties in February, up 19.6% compared to February last year but still well below the volumes that were achieved in the boom years from 2012 to 2016.
The average selling price was $919,454, down from $934,753 in January and $25,120 below the average of $944,574 achieved in February last year.
The median selling price was $820,000, down from $830,000 in January and unchanged from February last year.
Barfoot’s average selling price peaked at $968,570 in March last year, while the median price peaked at $900,000, also in March last year.
Barfoot and Thompson managing director Peter Thompson said a feature of February’s trading was the relatively high number of properties selling for under $500,000, accounting for 19.1% of all sales.
“There is a growing acceptance that where prices are at presently is likely to be the benchmark for the remainder of the summer/autumn sales season,” Thompson said.
While the number of sales was up, the number of new listings was down, with Barfoot signing up 1747 new listings in February, down 23.9% compared to February last year.
However Barfoot’s inventory, the total number of properties it has available for sale on its books, has continued to rise, with 4648 homes for sale at the end of February, the highest it has been at that time of year since 2012.
The latest figures are good news for buyers, with rising inventory levels meaning they will have plenty to choose from and not feel under pressure to complete a sale over fear of missing out, while the generally softer prices means vendors would be foolish to refuse a reasonable offer.