Coronavirus: Melbourne home values hardest hit across nation


Melbourne property values have suffered their greatest monthly loss since the city’s last downturn.

House and unit values fell 1.1 per cent in June, and 2.3 per cent in the past three months, as Victoria’s capital remained the nation’s worst performer during the coronavirus pandemic.

The city’s dwelling values dropped from record heights early this year to a $683,529 median in the past month, CoreLogic’s Hedonic Home Value Index shows.

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Melbourne home values are the hardest hit in Australia during coronavirus. Picture: Michael Dodge


CoreLogic’s head of research Tim Lawless said Melbourne had not seen a larger monthly loss since its previous downturn in January 2019.

“It looks like this downturn is gathering some momentum, with three months of value falls across Melbourne,” Mr Lawless said.

“There’s now added complexity because of the second wave of coronavirus across Victoria, which will weigh on consumer sentiment.

“It will probably mean less activity and fewer buyers.”

CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless.


Mr Lawless said worst-case predictions of 10 per cent value falls could still come true this year.

“At the moment, decline has been modest. But housing values have been propped up by government stimulus and bank leniency,” he said.

“The greatest test for the housing market will be later in the year when these policies are removed.”

CoreLogic also revealed that Malvern East was the hardest hit suburb in April and May, with values falling 4.8 per cent. Glen Iris, Northcote, Port Melbourne and Brunswick East were other struggling suburbs.

Auction: Lawrence Mooney's house

Auctions in Melbourne coronavirus hot spots have been banned. Picture: Andrew Henshaw


The dramatic falls come amid growing concern about Melbourne’s property recovery, following the banning of auctions and open for inspections in 36 suburbs on Tuesday.

Wakelin Property Advisory director Jarrod McCabe said shutdown suburbs would “go into hibernation” but prices should remain relatively stable.

Further price falls would depend on how quickly outbreaks were resolved, he said.

“I think confidence will rebound quickly if authorities can show they can suppress the virus in the next week or two, and that could be the foundation for a comparatively healthy spring property market,” Mr McCabe said.

“But if the health situation worsens and a citywide lockdown ensues in coming days or weeks, then I think the property market will not be immune. Buyers would inevitably step away and prices weaken over coming months.”

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Industry Insider director and property advocate Andrew Date said vendors in affected suburbs would have to “put the brakes” on their plans, in a blow to the property market.

“If you can’t have people going into those suburbs, it means less demand,” Mr Date said.

“It’s going to hurt a lot of vendors in that particular area … there’s no doubt it’s going to affect the confidence in the market somewhat.”

59 Ringtail Circuit, Maidstone, was supposed to go to auction this weekend.


Hocking Stuart inner-west director Leo Dardha said the market in his area had “taken a few steps forward” before it was forced to lock down again.

“Four weeks ago we were dead and buried,” Mr Dardha said.

“It’s just such a shame because the momentum has been building steadily since the Queen’s Birthday (long weekend).”

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