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Expert insights: Don't wait around for Melbourne housing prices to drop

March 8, 2018 9:00 am by Upside

Melbourne property prices are still on the rise, but is the bubble set to burst? Prospective buyers shouldn’t count on it.

Despite a slowdown in median house price growth across Melbourne, experts say the city’s property market boom is far from over.

The Real Estate Institute of Victoria’s president Richard Simpson told ABC News that 2017 marked Melbourne’s strongest property market in seven years.

"The last quarter did slow up in terms of growth, up 1.1 per cent for the median house price [compared with] the September quarter, but that was to be expected," he said.

"It's a very busy time, that September quarter, with spring-time selling, and that would account for the [lower growth in the December quarter].

"But overall, it was a great increase across the year."

Looking forward, industry analysts say it’s impossible to be certain whether average house prices in Melbourne will rise or drop, but buyers risk being priced out of the market if they wait too long.

CoreLogic state director for Victoria, Geoff White, told news.com.au that those thinking about taking the plunge into the property market should make an offer when they find a home that is within their budget and ticks most of their boxes.

“There’s not much evidence to say the market’s going to dip substantially enough to make it a full-on buyer’s market,” White said.

“Buying real estate is not like trading stock – people tend to hold on for a long period”.

“So if the market does flatten, it will pick up again. History has shown you should come out on top.”

For first-home buyers, White also said Melbourne housing market conditions are set to improve.

“There’s more stock coming on and vendor expectations have eased – 12-18 months ago, vendors were fairly bullish with what they were wanting for their property. And in a lot of cases, they were getting it.”

“But things aren’t what they were. If they want to sell, they have to be realistic,” he said.

EPS Property Search director Patrick Bright also believes that would-be buyers should go for it if they see a house they like and that they can afford, but that it’s also important to put in the hard yards to find the right property.

He suggests making a list of property must-haves, obtaining finance pre-approval, and committing to inspecting at least 10 properties a week.

“Don’t stop until you’re successful, and don’t make a fed-up purchase and settle for something that isn’t quite right”, said Bright.

Thinking about buying in Melbourne? Take a look at our latest properties for sale.

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