April 19 REA Insights Weekly Commercial Search Report, 2021
Searches to buy and lease commercial property on realcommercial.com.au remain elevated compared to last year’s levels, though are beginning to moderate.
Search activity from prospective buyers of commercial property was relatively steady over the past week, rising just 0.5%. Compared to a year ago, however, they were 66.3% higher.
Over the week, buy searches showed mixed movement across the states. The Australian Capital Territory showed the strongest growth in buy searches, up 9.5% over the week, followed by South Australia (5.6%). Searches were also up in Western Australia (2.9%) and Victoria (2.3%).
In contrast, the remaining states all saw buy searches fall over the week, with the largest declines seen in Queensland (-8.8%) and the Northern Territory (-2.4%).
The Australian Capital Territory has seen the strongest growth over the year, with buy searches more than doubling, at 113.9%. The Northern Territory and Tasmania, in contrast, have seen the weakest year-on-year growth at 39% and 49.3% respectively.
Searches to lease commercial property rose by 6.3% over the past week, with volumes up in every state except Queensland.
This past week saw growth in lease searches strongest in Tasmania (16.1%) and Victoria (12.4%), the only states to record double-digit growth.
As with buy searches, the Australian Capital Territory has seen the strongest year-on-year growth in searches to lease commercial property, at 102.7%. Close behind were Tasmania (98.3%) and South Australia (85.6%). Again, growth in the Northern Territory was weakest, with lease searches up just 39% over the year.
Year-on-year growth rates are expected to remain positive with business conditions and sentiment improving. However, we are likely to see further downward adjustment in search volumes as we move further away from the March-April 2020 comparison period in which Australia’s economy was most impacted by COVID-19.