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Melbourne Property Market Set for 2018

By Andria Savva

As the market kicks off with a traditional new year surge of energy, commentators are in agreement that while Melbourne property price growth may moderate over 2018, there’s little chance of any hard landing.

The latest data from researcher CoreLogic showed Melbourne prices softened by 0.2% in December, a result not unexpected result given seasonality and current sentiment. With quarterly growth now at 0.9% and annualised growth at a healthy 8.9%, analyst Cameron Kusher said any slowdown in Melbourne would be “less pronounced” than in Sydney, with high migration underpinning demand.

BIS Oxford Economics senior manager Angie Zigomanis was similarly positive, saying that while he expected prices in Sydney to fall by 10% over the next two years, Melbourne is “holding up stronger”  with expected single digit growth of around 2% over 2018.

Louis Christopher of SQM Research had a far more optimistic view, however, predicting Melbourne prices will growth by between seven to 12 percent over this year. Interestingly, a recap of expert predictions for 2017 noted Christopher was Australia’s “most accurate forecaster” over 2015 and 2016, with his forecast for Melbourne prices in 2017 also described as accurate with predictions of 10 to 15 percent growth.    

Perhaps the greatest influencer of prices is the cash rate and while the Reserve Bank is not due to meet again until the first week of February, it’s not expected that there’ll be any movement for at least the first quarter of 2018. From there, the predictions vary widely, although money markets are betting on no increase until early 2019.

As it stands, the current environment in our local area is characterised by a solid level of buyer interest which is expected to continue throughout the remainder of summer. Opportunities abound for savvy sellers who are poised to take advantage of the positive sentiment.

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