Tom Panos

‘Scary’: No buyers at weekend auctions | WATCH

PHOTO: Auctioneer and real estate industry coach Tom Panos. FILE

A prominent real estate industry coach says he is “really stressed” after “almost no buyers” showed up to his auctions over the weekend in the wake of the Reserve Bank’s third interest rate hike in three months.

Auctioneer Tom Panos has called on the RBA to consider the impact of its aggressive rate hikes on the real estate market, which continued to fall last month led by declines in Sydney and Melbourne.

In a video on Saturday, Mr Panos said he had six auctions that day and only sold one.

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“So I was zero out of five till the auction I did this afternoon at 3.30pm in Five Dock,” he said. “I must say to you, the first five auctions were quite sad in the sense that pretty much the only people that were there were the agents and the vendors. I pretty much had no one register throughout the day.”

Mr Panos said buyers appeared to have been spooked after last week’s 50 basis point increase, which brought the official cash rate to 1.35 per cent, and indications of another at the RBA’s next meeting on August 2.

“People have turned around and thought to themselves, man this is getting really scary out there as a buyer – I think there is definitely some of that,” he said.

“So here’s the deal. If the Reserve Bank wanted evidence – because they keep saying in their commentary, we are looking at what our policies of interest rate rises are doing to property – if they really want to look, take it from someone who is there at the frontline, take it from someone who is seeing it right there in the heat of the moment, it has already had an impact.”

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Mr Panos pointed to a PropTrack report published by News Corp over the weekend, which provided a suburb-by-suburb breakdown showing the 12-month and three-month change in house prices.

“There have been 20 per cent drops in three months in certain parts,” he said.

“For instance the Central Coast is one of those. So again, all I’ve got to say to you is – the Reserve Bank please keep your eyes out on real estate. It is having an impact. There is no question about it. It’s concerning buyers, we have vendors who have significantly reduced what they were hoping to get.”

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He added that there was a subset of buyers who purchased between late 2019 and the end of 2021 who “now have assets that are now significantly worth less than what they paid for”.

“Now of course that’s not a problem if you’re a normal property person that’s playing the long game and not a bitcoin in-and-out type person trying to time the market,” Mr Panos said.

“But my friends, all I’ve got to say to you is right now, if you are a vendor and you are thinking of selling your asset, you’ve got to be a very brave person to hold off not putting it on now. You want to be putting it on in the next week or two. I don’t want to see you putting it on in September, October, November.”

Mr Panos said the combination of the normal seasonal rush of properties hitting the spring market coupled with up to four more interest rate rises “says to me that you want to be a buyer this spring, not a seller”.

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“How do you become a buyer this spring? By being a seller this winter,” he said.

“Sell it now. Get on the phone, get on the front foot, nine o’clock Monday morning ring an agent, say tell me what can you get for my property right now and what do you think the property’s going to be worth in three months time.”

Tom Panos says ‘almost no buyers’ showed up on Saturday. Picture: John Appleyard

Tom Panos says ‘almost no buyers’ showed up on Saturday. Picture: John Appleyard

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