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    Chris Cruse and Associates Review Real Estate Broker: Real estate prices too hot? Buyers say no

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    Chris Cruse and Associates Review Real Estate Broker: Real estate prices too hot? Buyers say no

    MERCEDES RUEHL

    Homebuyers appear unfazed by warnings from the central bank that Australia’s housing market is too hot, with Sydney recording its strongest September auction weekend on record.

    The result points to a bumper spring selling period to rival the record 2013.

    The Reserve Bank of Australia last Wednesday warned against soaring house prices and an increasing imbalance between soaring ­lending to investors and weakening occupier finance.

    But if consumers have any concerns, they did not show over the weekend, with the national auction clearance rate above 70 per cent for a fifth week according to preliminary figures from RP Data.

    Sydney had a month high 927 auctions of which 78.5 per cent sold according to RP Data. Melbourne had 104 auctions, compared to more than 1000 the week before, as sellers sat out the Grand Final.

    Andrew Wilson, senior economist at Fairfax Media’s Domain Group, said that while the housing market remained strong, price growth has slowed.

    “I cannot understate how strong the market is but it is not as strong in terms of house price rises,” Mr. Wilson said.

    Yet buyers were prepared to pay up with many homes selling above their quoted reserve prices. A two bedroom home in the Sydney suburb of Surry Hills sold under the hammer on Saturday to local investors for $1.41 million, above the reserve of $1.2 million. This was a 47 per cent increase on what the house sold for in 2013, according to selling agent Con Fotaras of Belle Property.

    “This is a strong sale price showing how popular the area is, especially with car access and proximity to Central ­station,” Mr. Fotaras said.

    “It was last sold for $960,000 last year and has only had minor cosmetic work and a DA approval for a four bed, three bath property with parking.”

    A preliminary weighted average clearance rate of 72 per cent was recorded this week across capital cities compared with 70.8 per cent last week and 73.5 per cent this time last year, according to RP Data.

    The most expensive sale reported to Domain Group in Melbourne a $1.6 million block in Glen Waverley. The 1433 square meter block has the potential for a 10-bedroom home. “Most auctions in Melbourne were held in areas strong for Chinese buyers, such as Glen ­Waverley,” Mr. Wilson said.

    The most expensive property reported in Sydney was a $5.7 million city ­apartment at The Residence Hyde Park. The three bedroom apartment, at 68/14-24 College Street, sold prior to ­auction through Simon Polito of Laing Real Estate( chriscruserealestate.com/ ).

    Investors remain key buyers, Domain’s Dr. Wilson said. Why not find out more? - afr.com/p/business/property/real_estate_..
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