2010 – Annus Horribilis

2010 – Annus Horribilis

Most real estate agents, if they are being honest will agree that 2010 was a year to forget. In my 24 years in the business it is the worst year I have experienced and that includes the recession of 1990-91. A fellow agent said to me recently, about 2010, that there were times when he had to call his own phone number just to make sure the phone was still working!

Consumer sentiment is a funny thing in that it is so unpredictable and a mystery as to why collectively the mood changes. It is a perennial problem for economists, businesses and governments as it affects major investment decisions involving billions of dollars. The wrong decision(s) can result in massive losses for big business, which subsequently affects employment.

Fortunately, so far at least, the level of enquiry and inspections has increased significantly since the Christmas break and January was our best month for quite some time in terms of the number of sales and buyer inquiry. Buyers are back in the market and making offers.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is that there is still an excess of stock on the market and sellers are having to lower their expectations to meet the market. That’s not too bad if you are a seller and have owned your property for more than five years. Thanks to the boom of 2006 (in Perth) when property prices increased by 42% there has been virtually no real increase in the median price since 2007. In fact Perth has been the worst market in Australia over the past three years with Brisbane not far behind.

However, the prospects for 2011 are looking bright notwithstanding any major economic shocks as the income from the mining boon starts to flow through the WA economy.

This is not expected to result in a property boom but hopefully the worst is behind us and at least genuine sellers will find it easier to find a buyer, so long as they are prepared to meet the market. After all if you are buying and selling in the same market, it is all relative.

Best wishes

Bernie Kroczek
You’re as safe as houses with us.

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