2013 has topped the last four years for the Australian housing market with home prices jumping almost 10 per cent, and the boom isn’t expected to let up any time soon.
Sydney’s property market was the strongest, helping to deliver the strongest year of national capital city prices since 2009, according to the RP Data-Rismark December Home Value Index.
Low interest rates drove the demand for housing last year and the trend is likely to continue in 2014, with benefits flowing through to the rest of the economy, St George chief economist Besa Deda said.
House price growth would continue to drive recovery in residential construction, one of the “important ingredients” needed to support the economy as the mining investment boom winds down, Ms Deda said.
“Low interest rates, firm population growth and housing shortages among some capital cities suggest house prices will record further gains this year,” Ms Deda said.
“We expect growth nationally of 5-8 per cent this calendar year and these price gains should in turn help underpin household wealth and continue to help foster improvements in consumer confidence.”
Home values rose by 14.5 per cent in Sydney in 2013, pushing the city’s median dwelling price to $655,250, the report said.
Perth was the second best performer, with an annual growth rate of 9.9 per cent.
Home prices in both cities are currently at record highs, up 10.9 per cent and 3.6 per cent, respectively, over prior peaks, the report said.
Across the country, capital city home values rose by 9.8 per cent in 2013.
Hobart had the weakest growth, with prices rising by just 2.2 per cent, taking the median dwelling price there to $330,000 – the most affordable of all the capital cities.
RP Data senior research analyst Cameron Kusher said the gains of 2013 had followed two years of losses.
“Despite the strongest annual value growth since 2009, the rate of growth was not that startling given the low interest rate environment and the previous successive years in which home values fell,” Mr Kusher said.
Home values fell 3.8 per cent in 2011, and a further 0.4 per cent in 2012, Mr Kusher said.
He said the main challenges for 2014 would likely be the impact of forecast unemployment growth, affordability constraints, and whether regulatory changes will be implemented to cool the near-record high levels of investor activity.
Original article published at www.news.com.au by Belinda Merhab AAP 2/1/2014
First home buyers, investors in Queensland cashing in on spring selling season
THE number of homes for sale in some of Queensland’s entry-level markets has surged this spring selling season, as first home buyers and investors emerge from hibernation to hunt for bargains.
Local real estate agents are reporting a 50 per cent jump in the number of homes hitting the market in the outer northern suburbs of Burpengary, Morayfield and North Lakes since the start of August.
And new figures from property research firm, CoreLogic, reveal new listings are up 11.9 per cent in Brisbane over the month and 2.8 per cent higher than they were during spring selling season this time last year.
Unit listings have skyrocketed nearly 90 per cent in Fairfield and almost 60 per cent in Strathpine in the past 12 months, while there are at least 30 per cent more houses on the market in Middle Park than there were a year ago.
Raine & Horne Queensland general manager Steve Worrad said there was strong demand for housing in the state’s entry-level markets, driven by first home buyers and investors, who were being lured by their affordability compared with Sydney and Melbourne.
Reserve Bank of Australia data reveals the proportion of first-home owners loans has risen to 18.5 per cent this year from a low of 12.9 per cent two years ago.
Figures from home builder Porter Davis and realestate.com.au reveal that 46 per cent of would-be buyers in the Queensland market are currently looking to purchase their first home.
Raine & Horne Burpengary, North Lakes and Morayfield principal Gina Wells said entry-level four-bedroom properties in Burpengary were selling for $420,000, while homes in North Lakes started from $550,000.In Morayfield, entry-level properties were available from $330,000.
“First home buyers prefer suburbs such as Burpengary and North Lakes as they are only 40 minutes by rail or road from the Brisbane CBD, coupled with the region’s affordability.”
Ms Wells said investors made up about 30 per cent of buyers in the entry-level markets because they appreciated the region’s affordability, infrastructure and historically low vacancy rates.
“We’ve had an excellent September, and we expect the property markets in this region to motor along well into December thanks to a decent level of homes for sale and consistent buyer numbers, which include plenty of Sydney investors chasing the strong yields this region offers,” she said.
Nicole Taylor, 21, and her partner, Billy Mawson-Perini, 20, have just bought their first home in Burpengary — a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house on a 663 sqm block of land.
“We started looking around Rothwell and North Lakes and actually left Burpengary to the last minute, but when we saw this place, we loved it straight away,” Miss Taylor said.
“It’s got more land and the area’s nice. It’s good for a first home.”
Stan Egawa from Place – Sunnybank said those suburbs were attracting buyers in the $600,000 to $700,000 price range.
“There is good interest compared to some of the surrounding suburbs,” Mr Egawa said.
“We’re getting double digit buyers through open homes (in Mount Gravatt East and Holland Park), which is very strong.
“In Sunnybank, we’re only getting one or two people to an open home.”
Mr Egawa said many first home buyers were looking for a home they could move in to straight away and live in comfortably, but with potential to renovate the kitchen and bathroom down the track.
“Three-bedroom, one-bathroom houses are very popular,” he said.
“Their ideal location is Coorparoo or Greenslopes, however, they’re realising that for the amount of money they’ll be paying in that area, they’re going to end up with a lot older house or compromising on block size.”
Rob Karaka of All Properties Group said first home buyers were active at the moment in the suburb of Regents Park, with near new or new four-bedroom, two-bathroom houses on 600 sqm blocks were selling for between $400,000 and $550,000.
Shaji Rajan has just bought his first home in Regents Park after renting for three-and-a-half years.
For just $430,000, he was able to secure a five-bedroom, two-bathroom house on a 600 sqm block at 34 Lamberth Road.
But he had competition, with his offer only accepted after another offer fell through.
“Regents Park is a very good area and it’s affordable,” Mr Rajan said.
“For our budget, we can find very good houses here and good schools and it’s very easy for us to get to work.”
Algester and Calamvale on the southside are also attracting strong interest.
Andrea Manson of Belle Property – Calamvale said listings had jumped “substantially” this spring and first home buyers were keen to get in to the market before interest rates went up. “There’s that perception it’s going to happen sooner rather than later and so many (first home buyers) are wanting to lock in a lower rate while they can,” Ms Manson said.
“Anything under $500,000 in our area is very popular with first home buyers.”
Agents in regional parts of the state are also reporting a strong start to the spring selling season.
Home sales in Bundaberg are 5 per cent stronger than they were this time last year, according to Raine & Horne Bundaberg principal Joshua Rub.
“Values remain consistent despite the spike in sales and those properties that are priced, presented and marketed professionally are selling within 3.5 weeks,” Mr Rub said.
“Sales are higher this spring simply because we have more committed buyers than tyre-kickers.”
He noted the sale to a first homebuyer of a three-bedroom house close to the beach at 25 Heritage Drive, Bargara, for $272,000 within two weeks of hitting the market.
“In Bundaberg and Bargara, local first home buyers and investors are extremely active this spring,” Mr Rub said.
In Gladstone, which had been hit hard by the mining boom hangover, home sales are at their strongest point in four years, according to Raine & Horne Gladstone principal Mark Patton.
“Well-priced entry-level properties valued upwards of $140,000 offer excellent value and incredibly competitive yields that are as high as 7.5 per cent,” Mr Patton said.
“The savvy buyers have recognised the Gladstone market has reached the bottom and they are making their presence felt at open homes.
“Many have also realised that by buying now, they’ll have a good opportunity to share in some capital growth too.”
FIRST HOMEBUYER HOTSPOTS THIS SPRING SELLING SEASON
Suburb Median house price
North Lakes $492,000
Suburb Median house price
Mount Gravatt East $657,000
Holland Park $710,000
Regents Park $410,000
Town Median house price
(Source: CoreLogic, Raine & Horne, Place Estate Agents, All Properties Group, Belle Property)
Originally published as Where Qld first home buyers are looking this spring
Renewed hopes of saving North Lakes Golf Club
Residents living around the financially troubled North Lakes Golf Club are increasingly hopeful it can be saved from being turned into a retirement community.
The course has been bought by developer Village Retirement Group and is due to close at the end of 2019 although a DA is yet to be submitted.
The Save North Lakes Golf Club group met with Moreton Bay Regional Mayor Allan Sutherland this week and spokesman Andrew Cathcart tells Mark he is confident local will get a fair hearing.
SEQ begins big push for a billion-dollar City Deal
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (left) and Treasurer Jackie Trad are pushing for a City Deal for south-east Queensland.
Photo: AAP/Dan Peled
Political delays dogging infrastructure projects will be history if talks on Tuesday morning cement a new billion-dollar 15-year City Deal for south-east Queensland between all three levels of government.
Such a deal could benefit 3 million people catching trains and buses, driving on highways, building businesses, looking for housing, and finding school and universities between the Sunshine and Gold coasts and west to Toowoomba.
Deputy premier Jackie Trad and Brisbane’s lord mayor Graham Quirk will on Tuesday morning outline how close the 10 south-east Queensland councils – Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, Moreton Bay, Redland, Scenic Rim, Somerset, Sunshine Coast, Toowoomba and Lockyer Valley – are to signing Australia’s largest City Deal with the federal government.
Australia now has three City Deals backed by the federal government: Townsville (2016), Launceston (April 2017) and Western Sydney (March 2018).
Cr Quirk, the chairman of Council of Mayors (SEQ) that represents the region’s local governments, described a City Deal for the area as “a dramatic change”.
“The power of aligning the efforts of all levels of government and securing a long-term program of investment in our region will be a game changer,” Cr Quirk said.
“For the first time, all levels of government will be working in unison to protect and enhance the prosperity and liveability of south-east Queensland.”
Brisbane’s lord mayor Graham Quirk begins a campaign for a City Deal funding package for 10 councils on Tuesday morning.
Photo: Fairfax Media
A City Deal binds the three levels of government — federal, state and local — as a group to agree to a 15-year rolling funding program of infrastructure projects that a fast-growing region needs.
As projects provide a lift in land value, that financial uplift is identified, captured and then re-invested into the infrastructure funding pool, under a model first identified in Manchester in 2012 and then in Brisbane in 2014.
In April 2018, Cr Quirk and Ms Trad met the federal government’s new Cities and Urban Infrastructure minister Paul Fletcher, when they first put forward the SEQ City Deal.
All parties described those 2018 talks as “positive”.
Cr Quirk and Ms Trad will begin the public push for the SEQ City Deal at a business breakfast at Brisbane’s Convention and Exhibition Centre on Tuesday.
“We secured Australia’s first ever City Deal in Townsville, which is paying dividends with projects like the North Queensland Stadium, delivered through the City Deal,” Ms Trad said.
“That is under construction and on track to be open for the start of the 2020 NRL season.”
Townsville’s City Deal is a 15-year arrangement, while Launceston’s is a five-year deal and Western Sydney’s is a 20-year deal.
The federal government is tipped to announce City Deals for Geelong and Darwin by September 2018, allowing planners to work on Hobart, Perth and south-east Queensland over 18 months.
How could it help?
It locks in project funds over 15 to 20 years, moving them away from political promises, which are subject to election outcomes. It could remove election squabbling over the same project.
It sets out a timetable for projects allowing the private sector to invest more confidently.
It could help the next generation of infrastructure projects, after the Pacific Motorway, Cross River Rail and Brisbane Metro projects were all delayed by politics, angering voters.
It has also been mentioned as a way of funding Moreton Bay’s new university campus at Petrie and breathing life into the Brisbane River’s Resilient Rivers proposal.
What is Townsville’s experience after 18 months?
The Townsville City Deal was signed on December 9, 2016. It is a 15-year agreement.
Work has begun on stage two of the 25,000-seat $250 million North Queensland Stadium. It will be finished for the 2020 rugby league season. It is funded by the federal and state governments, and Townsville City Council.
The Queensland government has promised $250 million for new water supply for Townsville.
A business case for new Townsville Port facilities is almost finished and the Queensland government has pledged $75 million for port upgrade.
Townville mayor Jenny Hill said choosing the right projects was essential to make a City Deal effective.
“The City Deal provides a roadmap for delivery that breaks the political cycle so it is very important to choose the right projects or areas for reform that will make the biggest difference to a city or region,” Cr Hill said.
“All three levels of government also need to buy into the key priorities of the local area that are included in any City Deal.”
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill on top of Castle Hill with Townsville in the background.
SEQ City Deal – the background
- May 2012: Co-funding model idea began in United Kingdom.
- June 2015: Queensland prepares its own case for City Deals after Ms Trad looked at the UK City Deals idea in Manchester.
- 2016: Council of Mayors (SEQ), Queensland Property Council and the Queensland government put a plan together.
- November 2016: Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk signed a memorandum of understanding with prime minister Malcolm Turnbull in November 2016 to develop “tailored City Deals” for Queensland.
- February 2017: Ms Trad and Cr Quirk wrote to then-federal cities minister Angus Taylor, agreeing to a joint submission.
- Late 2017: A Cities Transformation TaskForce established in Brisbane.
- June 2018: Queensland’s major contractors called for a City Deal.
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