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National sentiment hits a high amongst Australian property investors

National sentiment hits a high amongst Australian property investors


  • 68% of investors show positive sentiment towards home market
  • Confidence highest in Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia
  • Perth seen as city with strongest long-term outlook, but Brisbane most popular with active investors
  • Growing preference towards brokers as finance remains a barrier to entry


Home sentiment in Australia’s property markets has reached a new high, according to a survey from Perth-based property investment consultancy, Momentum Wealth.

The annual survey collected 401 responses from property investors across Australia, with 68% of respondents indicating it was a good time to buy in their home market.

This marked a significant spike in confidence from previous surveys, with only 53% of respondents indicating positive sentiment towards their capital city market the year prior, and just 44% the year before that.

Confidence was highest in Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia, with Brisbane recording the largest home preference at 81%.

Team Leader of Momentum Wealth’s buyer’s agents, Emma Everett, said the uplift in sentiment is likely due to a number of shifts in Australia’s different property cycles.

“All of the capital cities which recorded a home preference in this year’s survey were either in the growth phases of their property cycle, or entering recovery with growth anticipated in the short to medium term, which likely contributed to the positive outlook in these respective states,” she said.

Perth, Brisbane seen as cities with best prospects

While confidence rose most in Melbourne (up 7% from last year’s survey), investor interest remained highest in Perth and Brisbane, with 37% and 26% of respondents respectively choosing the capital cities as the best locations to invest in the next 12 months.

Mrs Everett said the growth opportunities each location presented, as well as their relatively affordability, likely contributed to continued interest in the capital city markets.

“While Brisbane’s property market has been recording steady growth for some time, continued improvements in rental conditions and a significant tightening of stock in Perth’s housing sector are now driving the consensus that the property market is moving into recovery phase, with savvy buyers realising the counter-cyclical opportunities at hand.”

“Investors are also recognising the value for money these markets offer, especially in comparison to places like Sydney where prices remain significantly overvalued and affordability constraints are pushing buyers out of the capital city market in favour of regional or state alternatives,” she said.

While Momentum Wealth’s survey showed that Brisbane was most popular with investors actively seeking opportunities, Perth was seen as the city with the best long-term prospects by a significant margin, with 61% of respondents ranking the Western State as the location with the highest three-year growth potential.

Mrs Everett said a number of factors are contributing to a strong long-term outlook for Perth’s residential housing sector.

“While we’re already seeing early improvements across Perth’s rental and capital markets, rising activity in the mining sector, increased infrastructure spending and early signs of accelerated population growth are providing strong indicators for the market’s future performance,” she said.

Finance remains biggest barrier to entry

While sentiment was optimistic across Australia’s property markets, the survey showed that finance remained a barrier to entry for a large proportion of buyers, with 38% of investors highlighting lack of equity or borrowing issues as factors preventing them from entering the market in the shorter-term.

Team Leader of Momentum Wealth’s finance team, Caylum Merrick, said complexities in Australia’s lending environment could also be behind the growing popularity of mortgage brokers.

“We’ve seen some big changes in Australia’s lending market in recent years, first with APRA regulations and the Royal Banking Commission, and while lending restrictions have now been somewhat loosened with interest rate cuts and the relaxation of serviceability buffers, investors are recognising that the lending market isn’t cut and dry,”

“A lot of buyers, and especially those in more complex finance situations, aren’t just looking at securing a loan, they are seeking additional guidance and support in navigating the changing market and strengthening their financial position, which is where they are realising the benefits of approaching a mortgage broker” he said.

At 68%, the vast majority of investors surveyed said they would engage a mortgage broker to secure their next investment loan over other lending options, with only 19% indicating they would approach their bank directly.

Strong appetite for commercial property

The survey also revealed a strong appetite for diversification amongst investors, with 47% of respondents highlighting a blend of capital growth and cash flow as their preferred investment strategy.

The number of respondents who would consider investing in commercial property was also high, with just over three quarters who hadn’t been exposed to the sector indicating they would consider doing so either through direct or syndicated investment.

David Ellwood, Managing Director of Perth-based commercial funds management company, Mair Property Funds, said investors are recognising the benefits of commercial property over other cash flow-focused investments.

“With the low interest rate environment pushing returns on interest-bearing investments such as government bonds and term deposits below 2%, yield-focused investors are looking towards alternative income-generating options, and with potential yields of 5.5-7.5%, commercial property is presenting an attractive alternative,” he said.

Mr Ellwood says this, combined with the high entry cost of investing in commercial properties directly, could explain growing interest in commercial property funds.

“While investors are seeing the potential benefits commercial property can offer in terms of portfolio diversification and exposure to income-focused assets, investing in these assets directly isn’t always a viable option due to the high entry cost and market knowledge required, which is where pooled investments can present a more feasible alternative,” he said.

“These investments can allow buyers to gain exposure to high-quality assets at a lower cost and with the additional benefit of a professional management team, but buyers still need to weigh up each investment carefully as the risk can vary depending on the investment type and management team involved,” he said.

The survey results showed that 63% of investors would consider pooling money together in a syndicate or trust to access high-net worth investments such as commercial assets, up 6% from last year’s survey.

Good opportunities ahead for property investors in 2020

Overall, the results of Momentum Wealth’s annual survey revealed an increasingly bullish sentiment among Australian property investors.

“There are exciting times ahead for property investors in 2020 with a number of markets showing strengthening growth prospects, but careful decision-making and the right advice will be key for those looking to take advantage of market opportunities,” said Mrs Everett.



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Revealed: The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (7)

These are the 10 up-and-coming Brisbane suburbs tipped to pay dividends for property investors in 2020.

THEY are called the up-and-comers; suburbs that buyers may have turned their noses up at five years ago, but which now have the potential to boom.

Brisbane’s housing market is ripe for investment as cheap money, buyer confidence and a lack of supply drive demand for property.

Industry experts are saying now is the time to buy, so using their tips, The Courier-Mail has compiled a list of the 10 best suburbs in which to buy property in 2020.

The results are based on criteria such as infrastructure, public transport, dining precincts, buyer demand, school catchments, neighbouring suburbs, capital growth and affordability.

And so as not to ignite a turf war, the chosen Brisbane suburbs are a mix of north and south locations.


Distance from CBD: 13km

Median house price: $785,000

Number of house sales in past 12 mths: 137

This under-the-radar suburb was once only considered for prestige, rural residential properties, but is evolving into a solid investor option, according to ASPIRE Property Advisor Network.

“Increasing rents, falling vacancies, a rising population and affordable property options

are the gold standard when it comes to selecting promising investment locations and

Bridgeman Downs ticks all those boxes,” ASPIRE managing director Richard Crabb said.

“Most long-term Brisbane residents probably wouldn’t think of Bridgeman Downs as

an investor enclave, because it is so tightly held at approximately 85 per cent or more

owner-occupied, but this is exactly why we have pegged it as a great investment


Latest figures from SQM Research, a data company, show that the rental vacancy rate in Bridgeman Downs tightened from 4.5 per cent in November 2016 to 3.2 per cent in November 2019.

“A combination of rising rents and tightening vacancies is a key indicator of

investment income growth potential,” Mr Crabb said.

He said the suburb’s population had grown about 13 per cent over the past five years.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (12)


Distance from CBD: 8km

Median house price: $667,500

Number of house sales in past 12 mths: 60

Carina Heights set some records last year at the entry level price range, which has pushed

the average house price higher, to $667,500, according to — not bad for a suburb that once struggled to crack an average of $600,000.

“It’s the first-home buyers, the investors and, interestingly, the upsizers who have been attracted to this little pocket in the south,” independent buyer’s agent Wendy Russell said.

“Knock-downs and rebuilds are on the minds of home buyers who see value in Carina Heights now that an average house in neighbouring Camp Hill will set you back a whopping $220,000 more, at an average of price of $910,000.”

Ms Russell said she believed Carina Heights would continue to see the knock-on effects of being the next suburb over from blue-chip suburbs of Camp Hill and Norman Park.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (16)


Distance from CBD: 9km

Median house price: $605,000

Number of sales: 110

If you haven’t checked out the newly opened ‘foodie laneway’ — Everton Plaza’s Park Lane, you’re missing out.

Described as the foodie epicentre for northsiders, Everton Park has hit the mark when it comes to attracting those who enjoy the café/foodie lifestyle, but don’t want to head into

the city to get it.

Ms Russell said lifestyle suburbs attracted home buyers and renters.

“Keep an eye on this little northside suburb because at an average house price of $605,000, it will undoubtedly attract the attention of investors and first-home buyers in 2020,” she said.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (11)


Distance from CBD: 13km

Median house price: $620,000

Number of sales: 60

Ferny Grove has experienced a 23 per cent rise in views per home listing on, a property listings website, over the past quarter as buyers start to realise its potential. chief economist Nerida Conisbee said the suburb was well catered for when it came to schools and parkland.

“It also has a train station, which is popular with buyers,” Ms Conisbee said.

“With a median of $620,000 it is a bit more affordable and is a price point that is appealing to investors.”

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (10)


Distance from CBD: 10km

Median house price: $550,000

Number of sales: 81

Keep following the train line northwest and buyers with a budget of $600,000 or less will find Keperra.

Ms Russell said the flow-on effect from the suburb’s neighbour, Mitchelton, should guarantee property prices in Keperra rise this year.

“Just 10km from the CBD and with the train at your doorstep, the suburb is certainly an affordable option for first-home buyers looking to enter the market,” she said.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (15)


Distance from CBD: 29km

Median house price: $395,000

Number of sales: 95

In Greater Brisbane the suburb of Loganholme has experienced strong growth in its median house price in recent months, according to Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) southern Brisbane zone chair Rebecca Herbst.

“The attraction of Loganholme is its easy accessibility to the M1, whether you work in Brisbane’s CBD, or are heading to the Gold Coast on the weekend,” Ms Herbst said.

“Lifestyle is easy, the Logan Hyperdome is close by and the houses are affordable. It is easy to pick up a nice home for between $350,000 and $450,000.”

Other suburbs in Logan City that have experienced above average price growth and have further capital growth potential include Crestmead and Hillcrest.

“In Crestmead, affordability is the key,” Ms Herbst said. “Where else can you pick up a three-bedroom brick home for $250,000, only 30 minutes and 30km from the Brisbane CBD?”

Agent comparison site OpenAgent found Logan had some of the highest rental yields for houses, with Logan Central at 6.49 per cent.

Damian Piotto of Ray White Marsden said Logan was ideal for investors, particularly those from interstate.

“Entry-level housing is always appealing, especially to interstate investors when they compare local house prices — NSW in particular — and see significant value long-term,” Mr Piotto said.

“Rental returns are always going to be strong with the area located right in the middle of Brisbane and the Gold Coast, great public and private schooling, and the blue-collar industry within a 10 minute drive of these areas.”

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (14)


Distance from CBD: 10km

Median house price: $685,000

Number of sales: 112

School catchments are all the rage in Brisbane and one of the most sought-after includes Mansfield.

Ranking number 2 in the 2019 Better Education Top 100 Public High Schools in

Brisbane, with a state overall score of 99, the Mansfield State High School catchment has become a hot spot for families.

Property Club president Kevin Young said homes in good school catchments could command an extra 10 per cent weekly rent, compared with suburbs outside the catchment area.

“The focus on property buyers moving forward is to identify new investment in schools that will boost demand for homes in the local area,” Mr Young said.

“With the start of a new school year, it is timely that property buyers in Queensland start to target areas where government is going to invest significant amounts of money in new educational facilities, which will boost the future demand for housing in these areas.”

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (13)


Distance from CBD: 11km

Median house price: $572,500

Number of sales: 10

Let’s not forget Brisbane’s southwest, where one suburb to watch is Oxley.

A train ride from Oxley Station to Brisbane Central takes about 27 minutes and with an average house price of $572,500 it should be on the watch list for first-home buyers and investors.

“With neighbouring house prices up to $360,000 more (Corinda, $787,000, Sherwood, $932,500 and Graceville, $912,000), Oxley has the recipe for growth as an outlying

suburb on the train line with an affordable entry price for homebuyers,” Ms Russell said.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (9)


Distance from CBD: 8km

Median house price: $611,000

Number of sales: 115

Stafford Heights popped up on the radar of buyers in 2019 because of its affordability and accessibility.

“With an average house price of $611,000 it’s hard to pass up this suburb as an alternative to the more expensive neighbouring areas of Kedron and Gordon Park that had their day when the M6 Tunnel opened,” Ms Russell said.

She said the suburb’s proximity to Prince Charles Hospital and Westfield Chermside Shopping Centre made it appealing, along with the fact it was flood-prone.

“Stafford Heights could very well be in for continued growth in 2020 with so many ticks against it’s name — affordable, accessible and it doesn’t flood,” Ms Russell said.

Russell Duplock and Larissa Lawrence recently bought an investment property in the suburb through Ms Russell.

“We liked the general feel of Stafford Heights,” Mr Duplock said.

“There are a lot of young families in the area and a lot of property renovations happening too.”

Mr Duplock said the property was in a good school catchment and close to shops and restaurants, which he hoped would support capital growth.

“I feel Stafford Heights in the next couple of years is going to go well, considering it’s still affordable,” he said.

The couple also had no trouble leasing the property.

“We had four applications from the first open home and had it rented two days after, so plenty of interest,” Mr Duplock said.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (8)


Distance from CBD: 14km

Median house price: $625,000

Number of sales: 204

The bayside suburb of Wynnum offers lifestyle, infrastructure and affordability.

InSynergy chief property investment advisor Richard Sheppard said investors should consider the middle and outer rings of Greater Brisbane for houses, because the boom had largely started in the inner-ring housing suburbs and was rippling its way out.

Mr Sheppard said Wynnum, and the neighbouring suburbs of Manly and Lota, had strong market fundamentals that would underpin property price performance in the years ahead.

“That’s because, not only are they in the middle to outer ring areas, they offer

lifestyle while also being close to new and expanding infrastructure like the airport

and port, as well as road upgrades that will improve access to the CBD,” he said.

Revealed The 10 Brisbane suburbs in which to buy property in 2020 (1)



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How is Brisbane’s unit market faring?

How is Brisbane’s unit market faring

While the Brisbane housing market remains in full swing, a senior researcher has questioned the value of units in the Queensland capital.

In a recent blog post, Eliza Owen, head of research at CoreLogic, discussed whether Brisbane units were still in oversupply.

“The narrative of oversupply and underperformance in Brisbane units has dominated conversations around south-east Queensland property for almost five years,” Ms Owen wrote.

“At January 2020, Brisbane unit values remain 11.5 per cent below their 2010 peak to be at similar levels to 2007. But the latest data on property values, construction and population growth suggest that the story is changing.”

Ms Owen said it is worth noting that oversupply is “very much a unit-centric story”, with houses across Brisbane posting strong capital growth in recent years, “except for a brief, cyclical downturn over part of 2019”.

“In the previous trough-to-trough cycle that lasted between 2012 and 2019, annual house value growth outperformed unit growth by an average of 290 basis points. This is larger than usual discrepancies and is above the series average difference of 130 basis points,” Ms Owen said.

“In other words, the past cycle saw units significantly ‘underperform’ relative to housing stock in Brisbane. The rolling annual growth figure shows that unit values have largely declined since July 2016.

“2016 was a time when units were being built across Brisbane at an unprecedented level. ABS completion data suggests 21,342 units were completed, against a historic average of 11,585 per year. In the December 2016 quarter, the number of unit completions even eclipsed the number of houses delivered across the state.”

Furthermore, Ms Owen noted both CoreLogic and ABS data shows there’s been a convergence between the number of dwellings required and supplied since the beginning of 2018.

“With approvals data suggesting a decline in construction, and steady estimates of population growth, Queensland dwellings may fall into undersupply in the year ahead. Rental yields are also well above the capital city average at 5.3 per cent gross, meaning there could also soon be a turning point in investor demand.

“However, one unknown in this analysis would be projects that have stalled due to falling unit values in the past few years. If these re-commence, added supply could once again weigh down growth.

“The turnaround in the supply-demand dynamic is already being seen in unit values. Since bottoming out in June 2019, CoreLogic indices show the Brisbane unit market has recovered 2.2 per cent. This fits in with a more broad-based recovery, as reductions in the cash rate have reduced the cost of servicing debt, and increased incentive to purchase property,” Ms Owen concluded.



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Brisbane Poised To Attract More Buyers

Brisbane Poised To Attract More Buyers

Brisbane’s housing market is poised to attract many potential homebuyers this year, supported by its infrastructure pipeline and the increasing interstate migration, according to a forecast by the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA).

The affordability gap between Brisbane and the two biggest capital city markets, Sydney and Melbourne, has influenced the influx of people to Queensland, boosting the housing demand in Brisbane.

FBAA said Sydney’s property cycles, in particular, have been the driving force of interstate migration to Brisbane.

“The real effect of this migration increase has come into question and rightly so, how influential can an additional 30,000 people be to an entire capital city market. The driving force is the affordability gap between Sydney and Melbourne,” FBAA said.

Recent figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that Sydney is currently 64% more expensive than Brisbane.

“Each time we’ve seen the price gap rise, we’ve seen an exodus of people out of New South Wales to Queensland resulting in Brisbane price increases,” FBAA said.

Furthermore, the pipeline of infrastructure developments in Brisbane might boost its appeal to potential buyers.

Some of the anticipated developments include the Brisbane Airport expansion, Brisbane Metro, Northshore Hamilton Precinct, Cross River Rail, Brisbane Live, and Queens Wharf redevelopment.

“The evolution of Brisbane combined with the proven market drivers will be critical to the direction in which Brisbane’s property cycle moves. In terms of price rises, we’ll require the imbalance of supply and demand to favour the demand,” FBAA said.

According to a separate forecast by Domain, Brisbane is slated to record the second-highest price growth this year next to Sydney.

“We forecast the median house price to rise by 8% in 2020 and in 2021. This follows a period of soft price growth when Brisbane’s house prices rose only 5% in the previous three years,” said Trent Shire, an economist at Domain.

With this price-growth projection, Brisbane could witness its median house price go over the $600,000 mark for the first time.



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