Improving conditions in Queensland are driving more owner occupiers to take the plunge back into real estate in 2013. This is largely as a result of better housing affordability, low interest rates and growing employment numbers, all of which have contributed to a more optimistic outlook in the Sunshine State.
Buyers are out and about
Since Christmas, we’ve seen attendances at open homes continue to rise, and it is clear that many buyers feel 2013 is the year to buy. According to Kim McHardy, Principal of Raine & Horne Chermside, residential sales have picked up this year, with buyers noticeably preferring houses over units.
“Houses are in vogue at the moment and most homes appearing on the market are turning over fairly quickly.”
Raine & Horne Chermside recently sold a four bedroom modern residence at 15 Sport Street, Kedron, in just 24 hours for an asking price of $820,000.
“We had five groups through this home at the first inspection and we sold it the very next day,” said Mr McHardy.
Similarly, the Whitsundays has also seen positive results. Reg Gillen, Sales Consultant for Raine & Horne Proserpine, says open home attendances are up, primarily fuelled by miners from the Bowen Basin.
“I would estimate up to 65% of the buyers coming through our opens are employees of the mining industry,” said Mr Gillen.
“Many of these are first home buyers or workers relocating from Mackay to more affordable property.”
Mr Gillen said that Proserpine’s close proximity to two airports – the Whitsunday Coast and Great Barrier Reef – and the 74 sun-drenched islands of the Whitsundays, are major attractions for cashed-up fly-in / fly-out workers.
Market confidence on the rebound
Nicole Jeeves, Sales Consultant for Raine & Horne St George, revealed that properties priced around $300,000 are highly prized.
“Buyers are more motivated than last year and for many, now is the time to upgrade,” she said.
In addition, Ms Jeeves says properties that have been on the market for substantial periods are also selling, such as the five bedroom residence at 86 Alfred Street, St George, which sold for $342,000 after languishing on the market for four years.
“This property suddenly had a number of buyers looking at it, and its sale is a reflection that market confidence is on the rebound.”