With a mix of mining towns, tourist hubs and big cities, Queensland’s property market is diverse and every market segment has reacted differently over the past 12 months.
Metropole Property Strategists Brisbane director Liz Wilcox said that prestige property has been the worst affected, but added that Brisbane as a whole bottomed out midway through last year.
This was the point where investors and homebuyers returned to the market, but the city isn’t out of the woods just yet. “Not all parts of the Brisbane market are moving yet,” Wilcox said. “First homebuyer markets are [still] floundering.”
A beacon of hope is that in the three months to January 2013, RP Data reported a 0.7% increase in median house prices in Brisbane. The figure may be tiny, but it is “very different from the previous few years, where prices were falling,” Wilcox pointed out.
She added that plenty of buying opportunities remain. “The strongest markets in Brisbane are homes and well located apartments in inner suburbs around 5km to 10km from the CBD.
“Here, we’re finding that houses are selling quickly, often with multiple offers from buyers. Lower interest rates and increasing confidence that the Brisbane market has finally turned are likely to see this trend continue.”
Growth rates outside Brisbane have struggled as heavy price discounting continues in areas such as the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.
Tyron Hyde, director of Washington Brown quantity surveyors, said the evidence is there to see.
“I recently signed off a report in Noosa, where the property had sold for $1.2m four years ago, but our client just paid $450,000 and we estimated the original building cost was approximately $700,000.”
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