In 2018 Integrity Real Estate sold 75 properties – that’s 1 property every 4 days.

We were extraordinarily proud to be able to serve our clients to this extent in such a volatile market. The question now turns to 2019 and what the new year will bring. 

According to the Reserve Bank, Australia is courting a strong employment market which may boost wages growth in 2019. According to CoreLogic, economic growth nationwide is above expectations, unemployment is at its lowest level since 2012, and population growth is strong.

Again, home loan interest rates are at their lowest since the 1960s, and financial advisors do not expect that this will change dramatically. A fear that the RBA will fiddle with the cash rate is the cause for fear among a lot of buyers, however with experts saying this is unlikely to happen, now is the best time to be buying.

I was speaking with a financial advisor the other day who, with rolling eyes, remarked on the questionable media reports of the end of the year. Although household debt is at an all-time high, in actuality the dollars and cents that people are paying back is lower than it’s been in 30 years. So, while we are borrowing more we are paying less. Don’t believe the hype about “reducing debt”. These conditions are buying conditions.

As we still sit in a realistic market, where vendors are required to be practical about their pricing, there is no better time to be a buyer. As a buyer, remember that banks are competitive. Now APRA has raised the cap on interest-only loans. Not only that, despite the outcomes of the royal commission, banks are eager to win clientele and, in most cases, will outbid one another to do it. So, if you are speaking to your bank and are not happy with their products, do not be afraid to go across to another. Often your local real estate agent will have a selection of lenders or panel of brokers with a proven track record to get loans across the line. They should be your first port of call. They will also know the history of various types of properties. In a regional area this is important, as you may be buying an acreage property, for example, which requires a more specialised lender.

At the end of the day, whether is 1919 or 2019, competent professionals make business happen. Ensure you have the perfect alignment of agent, conveyancer, and financier. This is true of buyers and vendors alike.

For vendors, especially those deciding whether or not to sell in 2019, it is important that you evaluate the conditions around you. Reporting agencies across the board continue to praise the resilience of regional markets, showing again and again how Regional Victoria is outperforming Metropolitan Melbourne. This puts the Kinglake Ranges and its satellite postcodes in a strong position. For vendors, that does not excuse you from doing your research. No man is an island, the saying goes, and neither is a property – the relationship between a listing and its comparable sales has never been stronger. Lean on your trusted real estate agent to provide you with this advice because while conditions are good, the pool of buyers is shallower than it was last year (because of the above-mentioned reasons). It has never been more important to be priced right, marketed right, and presented right.

As always, listen to the agents on the factory floor. In 2019, a year in which the media outlets said the Melbourne “bubble” popped, Integrity Real Estate sold 1 property every 4 days. The numbers do not lie. As we flip the calendar over, our work ethic does not change and neither does our commitment to our clients. If you would like to experience the service of the REIV’s Sales Agency of the Year for Regional Victoria, do not hesitate to contact us on 5786 2033.