Double-digit property price growth for some areas
BRISBANE'S property market is "as safe as houses", flying in the face of fears that COVID-19 would cause prices to plummet, a leading industry expert claims.
Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) chief executive Antonia Mercorella said the state's capital was on track to be one of the best-performing property markets in the country over the next few years, despite the uncertainty created by the health crisis.
Ms Mercorella said the Brisbane market has managed to remain stable, despite the trading restrictions during lockdown, because real estate has continued to transact on the back of the Federal Government's economic reforms.
"Historically Queensland's property market has shown strong resilience during times of economic turbulence," she said.
"During the GFC, prices strengthened over the medium-term in many locations, courtesy of economic stimulus as well as low interest rates. Likewise, after the last recession and subsequent natural disasters, prices continued to firm over time - even with high unemployment.
"The illiquid nature of property as well as the proclivity for property owners and investors to hold for the long-term means this asset class can withstand short-term financial upheavals better than most, which is likely to be the situation after the pandemic. There is a reason why the adage 'as safe as houses' has been around for so long."
Ms Mercorella said Brisbane's housing market continued to show underlying strength in the first three months of 2020.
"With marginal growth month-to-month, backed by a quarterly median rise of 0.6 per cent, it's in line with the national trend for positive property price growth since June last year for the period," she said.
"Liveability, affordability and future economic prospects, all suggest that Queensland's capital still remains a market where you can confidently buy."
REIQ Property Data to 29 Feb 2020
REIQ Brisbane eastern zone chair Julie Harris agreed the predicted price falls as a result of the pandemic had not eventuated.
"All the properties we've sold since this crisis started have been at ticket-price or better," Ms Harris said. "We have not discounted one of them.
"We had a number of listings scheduled to happen that didn't. A number of vendors held back, but I have to say in general terms, the market has stayed consistent."
Ms Harris said the unit sector had also performed well.
"From September through to December 2019, we had a good jump in activity," she said.
"Units started to move and prices started to creep up. Unfortunately, come March, property activity stopped … but even the units we've put on the market during lockdown have sold at higher than ticket price."
The median house price for the Brisbane local government area rose 1.5 per cent in the year to the end of March to $690,000, while unit prices rose 1.2 per cent annually to a median of $420,000, according to the latest REIQ report.
Twelve suburbs outperformed the overall market, achieving double-digit house-price growth over the 12 month period.
Fig Tree Pocket was a standout - the median house price in the western suburb jumped 36 per cent, followed by Milton at 34.6 per cent, Windsor with 24.5 per cent and Seven Hills with a 22 per cent increase.
The median unit price in Bulimba rose 22 per cent, followed by more than 17 per cent in Murrarie, 16 per cent in Enoggera and 15 per cent in Morningside.
James and Erica Dick bought their home at 29 Fleetway St, Morningside, five years ago and have seen house prices in the suburb rise steadily since.
"I'm not surprised. We absolutely love the area," Mr Dick said.
"It's just got a good feel to it, the whole neighbourhood."
Mr Dick said the only reason they were selling the house was because his work was on the other side of the city.
"What attracted us to this area is it's close to everything, has good public transport and there are good parks," he said.
Marketing agent Tammy Dale of Place Estate Agents, who has been working in the area for 15 years, said she had noticed a considerable increase in interest in the pocket of Morningside, Seven Hills and Coorparoo in the past year or two.
"I think one thing buyers find with this area is that it's better value for money," Ms Dale said.
She said buyers could expect to pay considerably more for a 645 sqm block like 29 Fleetway Street if it was in Bulimba or Hawthorne.
"People don't move very often in this particular pocket," she said.
"We're seeing a mixture of people moving from surrounding suburbs and also people upgrading and downgrading within the suburb.
"People who are renting in the area are now starting to look to buy, with interest rates being lower."
Across greater Brisbane, the Moreton Bay house market is steadily rising, Ipswich is starting to recover and Redland and Logan remain in the softening phase, according to the REIQ.
Over the year to March 31, Logan's median house price fell 1.3 per cent to $395,000, the Moreton Bay median house price slipped 0.3 per cent to $447,750, Redland declined 1.5 per cent to $525,000 and Ipswich stayed steady at $350,000.
But there were some standout suburbs.
Samford Valley recorded the highest growth in median house price in the year to the end of March at almost 19 per cent, while Newport and Thornlands made price gains of about 15 per cent.
The unit markets across all regions are in the falling price phase, but Margate still managed to record a 9.9 per cent rise in its median price.
REIQ Ipswich zone chair Glen Ball said the region's housing affordability made it appealing even during a downturn.
"Everything that we're listing is getting a lot of interest and, in some cases, we're getting multiple offers," Mr Ball said.
"More listings are now starting to come back on, we're getting back to normality, and to me, it's just like before (the shutdown)."
Originally published as Search here: How much is your home worth?