What. A. Year.
While it’s obviously the market we’re here to discuss, the above statement could obviously apply to anyone or anything! Along with the obvious economic effects, COVID-19 also completely transformed how we engaged with our economy in the physical world, and Real Estate was no exception. Home opens and auctions grinded to a halt, while internal staff at all levels picked up at home where they left off from the office and quickly sought solutions to communication issues in this interpersonal industry. These included the classic Zoom meeting, appointment-only inspections, and even the room-to-room virtual inspection! Nonetheless, regardless of how things were in the environment, this was a company and industry that had seen tough times before and refused to throw in the towel. We couldn’t be prouder of them.
Now onto the market. Putting aside the idle, early quarantine months, and despite financial uncertainty for many, it thankfully didn’t take long for things to get back to pre-pandemic levels as Perth and WA began to reopen. It goes without saying both the State and Federal building grants certainly stimulated as intended. Land sales absolutely skyrocketed; causing most existing lots within more established suburbs to get absorbed, while other buyers took up more affordable options with packages on Perth’s fringes. By the start of the new financial year, the land sale numbers were there for the world to see, but more importantly for us, we’d seen a 58 and 51 per cent rise in house and unit sales respectively from April.
We’ve seen multiple articles now covering the luxury market and how the top end has more or less weathered the storm, but let’s be real, not much of that applies to many of us. Over the last month, 8 of the top 10 sales suburbs have had a median house price under $475,000! Many of these locations are Peard-strong suburbs such as Heathridge, Baldivis and Port Kennedy; all suburbs that may not be the closest in terms of proximity to the CBD, but nonetheless offer a well-established, longstanding suburb at an affordable price – something many buyers often forgo when building in a new development area.
It’s certainly naïve to assume everything is perfect. After all, we were still crossing our fingers for an end to the slump even before COVID. However, if there’s anything to take from the last few months, it’s that nothing at this point could possibly surprise us (we hope)! Early in the year, the numbers were slowly rising and we were the most optimistic we’d been in years. Couple that with the fact that we’re the envy of the world in how we’ve handled a global crisis, and you’ve got a bunch of opportunities just waiting to be taken!