South Australia is all about affordable investing, says PRDnationwide analyst Aaron Maskrey, and the bayside town of Port Lincoln’s units offer just that.
What’s driving Port Lincoln’s appeal, says Maskrey, is a growing economy and the potential for mining wealth to filter through to this picturesque seaside town.
“Port Lincoln’s economy is dependent on agriculture, however, there is an evolving tourism market due to its costal location and scenic appeal. If the expansion to the Olympic Dam proceeds, then there would also be a positive flow on effect to the local economy in Port Lincoln,” he says.
But it’s not just BHP Billiton’s headline grabbing $30bn Olympic Dam project that’s set to give Port Lincoln’s property market a boost, says Raine & Horne Port Lincoln director Steve Prout, as the Eyre peninsula’s own iron ore deposits are bringing an increased mining presence to the region.
“There are several mining projects that will be commencing in the next two to three years,” he says, adding that plans are afoot for Centrex Metals to build a new deep water port 70km north-east of Port Lincoln. What this will do, he says, is bring economic growth to the area without spoiling the city’s charm.
“There are a pretty strong five to ten 10 years coming up, these are exciting times,” he adds. “And it’s a perfect time in the cycle to be buying, as the market’s slow and rents are creeping up. Investors now make up 28 to 35% of our clients, whereas normally they’d be 15 to 20%.”
When it comes to finding a tenant, he adds that the city’s has a strong rental market thanks to managerial and government staff in the area benefiting from employer-subsidised rents. And looking at the figures, the rental situation’s expected to ramp up further in the medium to long term.
Population growth averages out at 0.75% per annum over four years according to ABS data, but SQM Research predicts that this figure will be closer to 2% by 2016. Renters made up 32% of the market at the last Census in 2006, and SQM predicts that this number will rise to 41% by 2011 and 46% by 2016.
Prout notes that unsurprisingly the most popular properties are those on the waterfront by the marina, and that properties in the $250,000 to $450,000 range are exceptionally strong for rentals. He adds that, with many of Port Lincoln’s residents being attracted to the city for its lifestyle options, having storage for surfboards, fishing gear and the like will also increase your chances of bringing in tenants.
In terms of amenities and attractions, the nation’s self-proclaimed seafood capital offers plenty of eating options, a couple of private and public schools, good sporting facilities and, of course, the ocean.