REA Insights Commercial Property Snapshot, January 2021
Despite the seasonal slowdown, activity on realcommercial.com.au remained heightened in December.
Given the current climate there are a myriad of forces that generate activity on realcommercial.com.au, some of which we’ll dive into in the category breakdown below. What is clear, however, is that the repeated market disruptions throughout 2020 created pent up commercial property interest and demand, which resulted in a late flurry of activity.
As a result, year-on-year growth in both ‘Buy’ and ‘Lease’ searches in December was highest we’ve seen since the origin of this data set two years ago.
In this month’s commercial snapshot, we continue to track search volumes over time and demand by category. We also provide a view of user behaviour by analysing the most-searched keywords per asset class as well as looking at the most popular commercial property listings for the month.
How are search volumes tracking?
The month of December represented the highest year-on-year growth in search on realcommercial.com.au in more than two years.
Compared to the month prior however, ‘Buy’ searches decreased by 12 per cent nationally, brought about by drops in the Australian Capital Territory and New South Wales.
National year-on-year growth for ‘Lease’ searches was similarly at the highest levels we’ve seen, which can be attributed to growth in New South Wales and Victoria.
Month-on-month, ‘Lease’ searches in December dropped by 16 per cent nationally. The most notable decrease was New South Wales, which was down 18 per cent.
There was significant year-on-year growth across all categories. Looking at the month-on-month changes, it seems offices (-20%), land/development (-15.1%), retail (-15%) and medical/consulting (-14.8%) were most impacted by the holiday season.
What are people and businesses looking to buy?
Only two categories reported month-on-month national growth in views per listing in December: hotel/leisure (3%) and commercial farming (3%).
The growth reported for the hotel/leisure category can be attributed to the increases seen in South Australia (8%), Queensland (7%) and New South Wales (6%). The category, however, recorded the most modest year-on-year growth (35%) compared to the more bullish growth figures seen in the graph above.
For commercial farming, it was solely the 17 per cent month-on-month increase in New South Wales that drove the national increase for the category. It is worth noting however that the percentage change in the views per listing metric is influenced by the limited supply of commercial farms available in New South Wales.
Medical/consulting listings saw the largest month-on-month national decrease out of all the categories (-16%). This dip can be attributed to the month-on-month decreases seen across all states, especially Victoria (-28.9%) and South Australia (-28.6%).
Nationally, all categories recorded substantial year-on-year growth in views per listing. At a state level, only showrooms in the Australian Capital Territory (-1%) and hotel/leisure listings in Tasmania (-31%) saw a year-on-year decline.
What are people and businesses looking to lease?
Views per listing for the hotel/leisure category were the only category that saw month-on-month growth in December nationally (7%).
This can be attributed to the growth seen in multiple states including South Australia (13%), Tasmania (12%) and Western Australia (8%). Out of all the states however, New South Wales saw the largest month-on-month growth of 19 per cent despite the state’s new COVID-19 restrictions. It’s worth noting that the number of hotel/leisure listings available was down in December.
The showrooms/bulky goods category saw the largest month-on-month decline of 14 per cent nationally, with all states reporting sizeable decreases in views per listing in December.
All ‘Lease’ categories recorded high year-on-year growth in December, with the land/development category showing the highest growth of 90 per cent. The largest contributors to this growth were New South Wales (113%), South Australia (84%) and Queensland (81%).
What are the features that people and businesses are looking for?
In December ‘kitchen’ featured as the most searched keyword for multiple categories including retail, hotel/leisure, commercial farming and showrooms.
New features that are important to commercial property seekers include ‘studio’ for offices and ‘character’ for medical/consulting listings.
What have been the most popular commercial listings?
See the top 10 most viewed commercial listings nationally and in each state below.
The most viewed commercial listing available for sale in December was a shop front and workshop in the rear located in central Abbotsford, Victoria. The property has development potential.