Buyer confidence is high as migrants flock to the Sunshine State to enjoy its affordability and lifestyle benefits
Pockets of Queensland are turning around as the state becomes the recipient of migrants from overpriced NSW.
“We’re seeing strong first-time buyer demand in Queensland – that’s finally starting to come through in larger numbers now, and Queensland seems to be the main beneficiary of those [price] increases in NSW,” says Angie Zigomanis, senior manager of residential property at BIS Oxford Economics.
The housing markets of the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast continue to enjoy the most attention from prospective buyers. The preparations for the Commonwealth Games put both regions in a strong economic position, and supply and demand is more balanced in these areas than in Brisbane.
“Given the lifestyle market in the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, [buyers] could be saving themselves $100,000–$200,000 on purchase price while still having a lifestyle on the weekends with their young families or outdoor activities,” says Damien Lee, head of acquisitions at Caifu Property.
“Brisbane is more expensive now for purchasers,” he adds. Nonetheless, it remains the ideal option for interstate buyers, which is leading to a growing population.
“It is more affordable to buy and construct real estate in Brisbane. [In terms of] median house price, [Brisbane] wins based on how much profit and how much growth you’re going to get out of that city,” Lee says. Not all regional markets in Queensland are experiencing this thriving market, however. According to the Real Estate Institute of Queensland, Toowoomba is winding down after a strong 2015: its median house price increased by only 1.4% in 2017, while its median unit value fell by 1.3%.
In Gladstone, house prices dropped as well, by 13.9%. However, this news is being met with the hope that demand and value will stabilise as the median price meets that of towns like Bundaberg. And while Townsville recorded a slight decline of 2.5%, it recently experienced a bout of drought-breaking rain, which has put residents in good spirits. “The optimism is very evident – the city has greened up and everyone is optimistic about the future. This could easily translate to increased buyer confidence,” says REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella. The housing market of Cairns is also recording a remarkable performance that is driven by strong tourism, which creates job opportunities.
SUBURB TO WATCH
KEDRON: Houses stay positive
Sitting on Gympie Road near Kedron Brook, the suburb of Kedron in northern Brisbane boasts an excellent location near Chermside, which is regarded as a mini CBD in Brisbane.
Westfield Chermside Shopping Centre is nearby, along with restaurants and high-end shops. The Queensland State Emergency Service is situated in Kedron itself.
Houses in this suburb have recorded consistent growth since 2013, with such properties staying on the market for just 48 days on average. The average weekly rental rate rose by 2.3% to hit $450 in January 2018. By contrast, unit values fell by 3.2% in the year to March 2018, pushing the median price down to under $380,000 following a trend of positive growth in the past five years.
Location: Kedron is near the ‘mini CBD’ of Chermside, a shopping and restaurant hub
Growth: Kedron’s market has seen five years of steadily increasing house prices
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