With housing inventory tight and investors returning to the market, unit sales in Perth have skyrocketed
Unit sales have skyrocketed in Perth, rising 58% in the March 2021 quarter over the March 2020 quarter.
Damian Collins, president of the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia, said early data for the March quarter showed that growth in unit sales exceeded growth in house sales over the past year, with house sales rising 35% during the same period.
“Unit sales are the highest they have been since 2013,” Collins said. “Several factors are contributing to this. With the shortage of houses for sale, more people are considering a unit as a place to live. Also, we have started to see investors return to the market and many prefer to buy units.”
While the number of units listed for sale last month was down 16% from March 2020, this wasn’t as steep as the decline in house listings, which dropped 41% during the same period.
“Apartments, townhouses and units also offer plenty of lifestyle appeal and convenience, as they are generally lower-maintenance and positioned closer to the CBD and other amenities,” Collins said.
REIWA data showed that it took an average of 32 days to sell a unit in Perth during the three months to March, 25 days faster than the 57 days it took during the three months to March 2020.
“While units are being snapped up quicker than they were a year ago, the unit median selling time for the three months to March 2021 is still 17 days longer than the median selling time for a house (15 days),” Collins said.
Perth’s median unit price for the three months to March was $381,750, almost $120,000 cheaper than the median house price of $499,000.
“Affordability is another factor contributing to the surge in unit sales,” Collins said. “While Perth’s median house price has grown 4% over the last year, the median unit price is only up 0.5%. REIWA is forecasting strong house-price growth in 2021. With the rental moratorium over and near record-low vacancy rates, it is likely the strong demand for units will continue throughout the remainder of 2021.”