Confidence in Sydney’s housing market remains strong despite COVID-19, a survey which predates the announcement of the Commonwealth HomeBuilder program has found.

Conducted by UDIA in conjunction with Urbis, the survey took place over the week spanning May 6 to May 12 and involved responses from 531 residents including renters, owners with mortgages and outright owners across Greater Sydney.

It found that overall, 52 percent of those surveyed were either very positive (21 percent) or a little positive (31 percent) about buying property.

This is almost three times the 19 percent who were either a little negative (13 percent) or very negative (6 percent).

Furthermore, expectations about prices remain positive over the long term.

Whereas 49 percent of those surveyed believe that dwelling prices will fall over the next sis months, almost two thirds (63 percent) expect values to be higher in eighteen months compared to today.

Whilst the results indicate that confidence levels are lower compared with the previous survey result in August last year, they demonstrate that sentiment remains positive overall.

When the same survey was conducted in August last year, 58 percent of respondents were optimistic about the housing market.

Nevertheless, the survey does show a cooling in immediate purchasing intentions.

All up, the number of those who are likely to purchase a dwelling in the next twelve months fell from 22 percent last August to 18 percent in the most recent survey.

In other survey results:

  • Sentiment has held up in the City and East (60 percent positive) but has dropped compared with the previous survey in Western Sydney (down 9 percent to 52 percent), North (down 4 percent to 51 percent) and Inner West and South West (down 11 percent to 50 percent)
  • Sentiment has fallen among families and singles/childless couples but has remained stable among those in group share homes
  • Sentiment has fallen more sharply among owners (down 6 percent ‘very positive’ to 22 percent) compared with renters (down 4 percent ‘very positive’ to 20 percent).
  • Free standing homes were the most preferred dwelling type (61 percent), followed by townhouses (13 percent), low rise apartments (11 percent), medium and high-rise apartments (9 percent) and villa/units in retirement communities (4 percent)
  • Parramatta was the most preferred suburb in which to live followed by Castle Hill, Chatswood, Blacktown and Balmain

As mentioned above, the survey was conducted from May 6 and May 12 and predates the announcement of the  Commonwealth HomeBuilder program.

Kylie Newcombe, Associate Director of Urbis, said sentiment ‘didn’t take the nose-dive that we were anticipating’.

“The UDIA | Urbis Home Purchaser Sentiment Survey will be launched at the online UDIA TV event on Thursday 18 June.”