Auction Inaction For Melbourne

News at the coalface is that vendors are becoming increasingly nervous about spending the tens of thousands of dollars required for an auction campaign, only to find they don’t receive a bid when it counts. This follows a weekend described as the worst for auction clearance rates in Melbourne since the late 1980s.

"I think we have seen the first possible death throws of the auction system," says Morrell & Koren director David Morrell, who says that as well as the extra costs, vendors find they have minimal bargaining power once they are "caught with their pants down" by failing to sell a property at auction.

"The smart and savvy have woken up to the fact it’s pointless to bid against a vendor bid," Mr Morrell says. "We attended auctions over the weekend with more than 250 people – not all neighbours – and nobody was even prepared to make a cheeky opening bid." He expects to see more private sales and expression-of-interest campaigns heading into 2009.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of