Sydney’s supply of properties for sale has hit a decade high this summer as weakening buyer demand creates a growing backlog of unsold housing.
New data published today showed the number of homes for sale across the city surged 11 per cent last month to hit 35,704 — the highest volume recorded over a February since 2009.
There were also nearly 10,000 more homes for sale than over February 2018, an annual jump of 14.4 per cent, according to the SQM Research figures.
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The research group’s lead analyst Louis Christopher said new listings were coming up for sale alongside homes that were first put onto the market months ago.
Many were listed as far back as spring but failed to attract a buyer, he said.
“It was a very weak spring selling period,” Mr Christopher said, adding that many sellers who were unsuccessful had failed to adjust their prices to “meet the market”.
Other owners were struggling to sell their homes because their listings were perceived as “stale” after anguishing on the market unsold for too long.
Buyer’s agent Peter Kelaher of PK Property said a long listing period tended to “turn off” buyers, who often thought a home’s failure to sell was due to a problem.
“It may have been priced too high in the beginning, but by the time the owners (cut the price) it’s too late,” he said.
Property listings would likely continue rising over March, a traditionally busy period for sales, according to Mr Christopher.
Driving the increase would be sellers relisting homes they failed to sell last year, he said.
This would put further downward pressure on Sydney property prices, which have already fallen an average of nearly 10 per cent over the past year, CoreLogic sales data showed.
The drop pushed the median price of a Harbour City home down to about $789,000, well below the more than $900,000 it was in mid-2017 when the market was peaking.
Sellers have had a particularly difficult time trying to offload properties quickly in city regions where there has been rampant building activity.
These areas include Gladesville, Epping, Rydalmere, North Kellyville and Parramatta, where the average property takes nearly three months to sell.
Higher priced properties or those in less desirable positions like a main road have been taking even longer — a group of one-bedroom apartments on Victoria Rd in Gladesville has been up for sale since May 2017.
A five-bedroom house on Chesterton Ave in North Kellyville has been up for sale since November 2017, while a house on nearby Foxall Rd has been for sale since May 2016.
In that time, the prices for these homes have dropped by up to $250,000.