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Sand and surf: The demand for beachside properties

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties

In a recent article for the Australian literary journal Quadrant, architectural historian Philip Drew wrote that most of us, at some time, had toyed with the fantasy of “swapping a stressful city existence for a sensual carefree existence close to the surf”.

According to ABS data, more than 80 per cent of the population lives within 50 kilometres of the coast, making us one of the world’s most urbanised coastal dwelling populations. But, of course, only a lucky few can lay claim to a beachside dwelling – a home within easy walking distance of sand and surf.

Sunshine Coast buyer’s agent Ann Lindner of Property Business says spending time at the beach is an integral part of the great Australian dream.

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties 1

“[You can] take the kids, the dogs and boogie boards, eat fish and chips and stay for the day,” she says. “Nearly everyone has childhood memories of holidays at the beach and now they have families of their own and they want them to experience it too.”

Stockland senior development manager Matt Patullo says a visit to the beach always leaves him in a good frame of mind.

“It’s such a beautiful thing to live next to,” he says. “Living near the beach promotes physical activity and general well-being in addition to the benefit of having a beautiful environment in which to spend quality time with family and friends.”

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties 2

Lindner says most of her clients are keen to live on or close to the beach, and/or have water views.

“Particularly expats or retiree clients who want to walk to the beach, be it from a unit or a house, and they have the funds to purchase them,” she says.

Lindner says the Sunshine Coast offers 60 kilometres of pristine beaches, stretching north from Caloundra to Noosa. “[We’ve got] surf beaches, calm beaches, walking beaches and dog beaches,” she says. “There’s something to suit everyone both in style and budget.”

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties 3

Lindner says quality properties sell quickly and usually attract multiple offers.

Stockland’s Bokarina Beach is a case in point with about one-third of the current release of 35 beach homes already sold. Set a 400-metre walk from the beach with lake and park views, the homes have been designed by Ellivo with high-quality finishes and a coastal aesthetic.

Patullo says the employment opportunities offered by the new Sunshine Coast University Hospital and Stockland Birtinya Shopping Centre are almost as compelling a drawcard as the gorgeous beachside location.

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties 4

“There’s not many locations where you can live affordably within proximity to beautiful beaches and be close to employment,” he says. “It’s a really unique proposition before you even start talking about the homes themselves.”

Patullo says the strong appetite for beachside homes has Stockland very optimistic about the next stage of releases at Bokarina Beach.

“This is one of the last releases [of beachfront land in the Sunshine Coast] of such a scale and it’s a unique opportunity to really craft an amazing community,” he says. “You’ve got access to jobs, lifestyle, beaches, entertainment and leisure precincts which are key in nurturing a highly liveable and thriving community.”

Sand and surf The demand for beachside properties 5

With a limit to the number of beachside properties available both now and in future coastal development around the country, it’s little wonder established properties are slow to change hands and often claim record prices and bold headlines.

Last year four of Queensland’s top six residential sales were beachfront homes, and included the Sunshine Beach home of tennis great Pat Rafter, who has moved to another coastal gem, Byron Bay.

As Philip Drew concludes in his book The Coast Dwellers: Australians Living on the Edge, “it is the coast, not the central heart of the continent, that has shaped the Australian identity”.




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Gold Coast

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million

A Gold Coast mega-mansion with a private beach has sold for an eye-watering $11.75 million, blasting the city’s 2020 sales record out of the water and proving property pundits are still willing to splash big cash during the pandemic pandemonium.

Looking less like a home and more like a Thai resort catering to Hollywood royalty, the six-bedroom mansion Riverpoint, at 1-3 La Scala Court, occupies a gargantuan 2623-square-metre block on the glitter strip’s Isle of Capri, while featuring a cinema, seven bathrooms, tropical gardens and a tennis court.

The home was placed under contract by Amir Mian of Amir Prestige, and while co-selling agent Charlon Delos Angeles remained tight-lipped about the buyer, he said the incredibly short time on market was testament to the abode’s star-appeal.

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million (2)

“It was launched just over three weeks ago … so when you’re looking at statistics on high-end properties, there’s only seven sales of this calibre a year and they normally just don’t sell this quickly,” Mr Delos Angeles said.

“We’re surprised it was such a speedy sale but not surprised because it’s such a unique style of home. It’s more of a resort and as beautifully photographed as it is, that’s nothing in comparison to a walk-through.

“There’s this beautiful running stream that feeds into the pool, and even just walking in you can hear it … As soon as you step through those doors, it’s like the overflow of feelings you get all at once. You’re in the middle of suburbia – you’re in Isle of Capri – and then you step into something that should be Thailand.”

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million (3)

Mr Delos Angeles said everything about the magnificent mansion oozed getaway vibes – from the wellness centre with space for a private masseuse to the countless outdoor entertainment areas that lapped up pristine views.

While that luxury X-factor attracted global buyer interest, he said the city’s prestige market was continuing to enjoy international attention and barely paused for breath during the pandemic.

“We have had increased inquiry and people are starting to look at the Gold Coast as a safe area … and I’m sure that Australia is a really good investment right now because of the dollar,” Mr Delos Angeles said.

He felt the sheer opulence on offer in prime waterfront hotspots was a major pull for the city, and said they were nothing short of thrilled to have clocked such a high ticket sale in such a challenging time.

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million (4)

While Riverpoint may be far from the Gold Coast’s overall price record of $27 million (achieved in 2008 at Mermaid Beach), it remains the stuff stay-cation dreams are made of.

Taking up an impressive 90 metres of main river frontage, the home boasts multiple indoor and entertainment areas, a kitchen to make Gordon Ramsay swoon, three powder rooms, a wellness retreat and five-star bedrooms that boast sweeping water views.

To add to the Oprah-level extravagance, there’s also a private beach, a pontoon, a 10-car basement garage and a boat ramp.

Gold Coast mega-mansion with private beach sells for $11.75 million (5)

Prior to Riverpoint, the top sale for 2020 on the Gold Coast was a $6.75 million Paradise Point home that was snapped up earlier this year.






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Gold Coast

Gold Coast Apartment Sales Pick Up, Supply Falls Off

Gold Coast Apartment Sales Pick Up, Supply Falls Off

The Gold Coast apartment market has transitioned into the Covid-19 crisis in a much better position than it was going into the global financial crisis, planning and advisory firm Urbis says.

In its latest quarterly survey, Urbis found that the Gold Coast market was tracking well, recording 265 sales in the first quarter of 2020, sitting above the two-year quarterly average of 238 sales.

The weighted average sales price also lifted by 10 per cent over the quarter to $809,811, buoyed by strong pre-Covid sales.

Urbis said that over the year the Southern Beaches Precinct recorded the highest sales rate, yet a recently launched projects in Surfers Paradise had rebooted enquiry and transactions in the Gold Coast Central Precinct.

Over the quarter 64 per cent of a sales were to owner occupiers and only five per cent to overseas buyers, while interstate investors accounted for 19 per cent of sales.

Urbis senior consultant Lynda Campbell said the current environment had pushed developers to reassess projects to ensure they are ready for changes in the market.

Gold Coast Apartment Sales Pick Up, Supply Falls Off (2)

“It is more important now to make sure projects are targeting buyer demand in order to weather the storm,” Campbell said.

“Projects with a high exposure to the investment market will need to put in place solid pre-settlement work to maintain a strong settlement rate.”

Urbis said the city had also benefited from a shift in sentiment in recent years, favourably trending away from large developments targeting international investors and instead towards smaller boutique projects, targeting owner occupiers.

Moving forward the market is tipped to remain resilient, further supported by low interest rates, a low level of supply and a higher level of product aimed at the owner occupier market.

Worryingly, the supply of new apartments remained relatively weak at 1,000 apartments, the lowest level recorded in over five years.

“There is a pipeline of projects ready to launch over the next six months, but whether they do will be something to watch,” Campbell said.

“If project launches slow, this will put pressure on the current supply.”

Urbis said it would be watching fourteen forthcoming projects containing approximately 1,160 apartments due to settle throughout 2020 closely to see if the Covid-19 border restrictions were impacting the market.

“The next quarter’s results will be highly anticipated,” Campbell said.

“Interest rates are still low, and there is not a large volume of expensive product aimed at investors, as was the case going into the GFC.

“Though we expect sales to slow, conversations with developers suggest that enquiry is still strong.”




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Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities

Property price cutting has nearly doubled and tripled in Australia’s two largest cities, new data shows, signalling a slowing housing market.

More than 13 per cent of property listings in Sydney and 10.7 per cent in Melbourne had their prices discounted in April, according to Domain data.

This was up from 6.7 and 3.7 per cent respectively from April 2019, equating to nearly double the amount of discounts in Sydney and almost three times the amount in Melbourne.

“It’s a good leading indicator of where prices are going to go,” Domain senior research analyst Nicola Powell said.

“When you see an increase in the proportion of listings with a discount, it normally means that you’re going into a softening market.”


March saw a jump in the proportion of listings discounted which has eased in April

Percentage of live listings with asking prices discounted

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities

All capital cities across the country saw a higher percentage of properties being discounted in April 2020 compared with April 2019.

But the percentage of discounted properties was the highest in March this year as the economy went into a rapid hibernation amid the escalating COVID-19 outbreak.

“March was particularly a turning point, we saw that in other market indicators and the fact that we had the ban on open homes and auctions and the economic shutdown,” Dr Powell said. “The positive thing for April is that percentage has now started to ease.”

All cities besides Darwin and Hobart saw more than 10 per cent of listings discounted in March, with Sydney reaching 14.1 per cent and Melbourne 12.6 per cent.

Adelaide was the next most marked-down city at 11.1 per cent in March, while Canberra, Perth and Brisbane saw between 10 and 10.6 per cent of properties take a price cut.

In April, all cities saw the percentage of properties with price cuts slip – with all besides Sydney and Melbourne seeing property discounts of less than 8.3 per cent.

Dr Powell said the few new properties listed in April were potentially priced more competitively than those in March, which were likely to have been listed earlier in the year in a rising market.

“We were perhaps seeing vendors coming to the market being a little bit more bullish in terms of the prices they wanted to achieve,” she said.


Most capitals had a jump in listings discounted in March with fewer properties discounted in April

Percentage of live listings that have had the asking price revised down

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities (2)

While the percentage of properties with price reductions was higher than it was during the 2017-19 downturn in Sydney and Melbourne, Dr Powell said the dollar amount reduction was relatively similar.

“When you look at the percentage of price edits, it’s actually more or less the same, and in some cities the percentage is actually smaller than this time last year,” she said.

Most capitals saw prices revised between 3 and 5 per cent, with Hobart slightly higher at 5.2 per cent and Darwin recording a higher percentage of 8.2.


While the number of listings discounted jumped, the amount of the price discount has eased

Percentage of median price edit

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities (3)

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities (4)

Sydney’s Northern Beaches region, which includes suburbs as far south as Manly and as far north as Palm Beach, saw the highest proportion of discounted properties in the country at 17.6 per cent in April.

That number was up from 10.5 per cent in April last year, and from an 18-month low of 5.8 per cent in September 2019.

Prices in the area were coming down from a high peak (the median house price in the area is $1.97 million, up 18.6 per cent on the previous year), Joshua Perry from Belle Property Dee Why said, which meant widespread discounting was expected.

“There’s always some owners who aren’t adjusting, but most are now seeing that what is happening now is a fair price,” Mr Perry said.

He said inspection and auction restrictions being lifted meant there was more confidence from both buyers and sellers.


A rising number of listings have prices discounted during downturns

Sydney, percentage of listings with prices discounted against annual house price growth

Property price slashing has doubled and tripled in Australia’s biggest cities (5)

The Mornington Peninsula and Melbourne’s inner south saw the highest proportion of discounted properties in Victoria and were tied for the second-highest across the country, along with Newcastle in NSW, at 14.3 per cent.

McEwing Partners director Dean Phillips said the Mornington Peninsula had seen a high number of holiday homes turn over since the beginning of COVID-19 restrictions with people becoming more realistic about the price of their properties.

“They’re not trying to profiteer as they were prior to COVID,” Mr Phillips said. “They’re selling for genuine reasons and we are seeing a return to a genuine real estate market.”

The regions where prices had been discounted the most deeply included Shepparton in Victoria where buyers could expect a 9.4 per cent discount, Daly – Tiwi – West Arnhem in the Northern Territory at 9 per cent and the Southern Wheatbelt in Western Australia at 8.7 per cent.





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