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Central Queensland

The Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast suburbs where your house earns more than you


House prices in a handful of Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Brisbane hot spots grew by more than an Australian senator’s salary in just 12 months, following a milestone year that saw homes in a quarter of all Queensland suburbs gain more than the annual household income.

New analysis from Domain has revealed house prices in Sunshine Beach, Minyama, New Farm and Hamilton soared by up to 400 per cent more than the average household salary in the year leading up to June, showcasing the incredible strength of the state’s market amid growing fears of affordability.

According to the report, houses in Sunshine Beach on the Sunshine Coast enjoyed a colossal $445,000 annual change in prices – far outstripping the average household salary of $76,976.

In nearby Minyama, houses gained $437,500 to outperform the average income of $70,543 by almost $367,000. In the blue-chip Brisbane suburb of New Farm, house prices rose by $440,000 – a figure that’s four times more than the annual household income of $103,516.

In the unit market, Sunshine Beach also topped the Queensland list while taking fourth place nationally after annual property prices skyrocketed by $212,500 – an incredible $135,000 more than the annual household income. The sunshine state also recorded the highest proportion of units that gained more in price growth than the annual household income, followed by NSW.

Queensland suburbs where house prices rose faster than incomes
Suburb Annual change in property price Annual household income Change in property price minus annual household income
Sunshine Beach $445,000 $77,067 $367,933
Minyama $437,500 $70,626 $366,874
New Farm $440,000 $103,638 $336,362
Hamilton $352,500 $108,929 $243,571
Bundall $337,500 $95,011 $242,489
Miami $296,250 $79,943 $216,307
Noosaville $280,000 $66,255 $213,745
Noosa Heads $285,000 $79,080 $205,920
Mermaid Beach $290,000 $84,141 $205,859
Burleigh Heads $272,500 $79,713 $192,787

While the data might look dire for bargain home hunters, property punters said Queensland remained as cheap as chips compared to most major southern cities, with the gargantuan house price growth attributed to record rates of interstate migration in key lifestyle hot spots.

“What we have seen and what’s very evident for Queensland is the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast are very up there, and this data is really telling of who is active in the market,” Domain’s chief of research and economics, Nicola Powell, said.

“But 25 per cent [of suburbs with higher property price growth than salaries] is quite a strong milestone for Queensland … I think in the years leading up to the Olympics we’ll probably see even greater demand for properties there.”

Dr Powell said while the sheer rate of annual price growth appeared extreme in isolation, across the country NSW was the standout performer, followed by Tasmania, Victoria, ACT, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.

“What we’d seen in parts of NSW and VIC is some unbelievably extreme rates of growth … and in Queensland 69 per cent of suburbs still had lower rates of growth than the household income,” she said.

Ray White New Farm principal Haesley Cush said while sheer buyer appetite had sent prices soaring in the city’s most sought-after precincts, the fact that a stylish two-bedroom unit could still be snapped up for less than $600,000 in a trendy inner-city patch made Brisbane a gold mine.

“We have had only moderate growth in houses [in the last 10 years] and in units we’ve had negative growth so the fact that some suburbs are outperforming annual incomes is offset by the fact that people’s incomes were beating it in past years,” Mr Cush said.

“And I still think we’ve got a long way to go in terms of values before it starts to hit that big question of, ‘How long can this go for?’”

As to where he’d pour his investment property dollars, Mr Cush said anywhere with major transport infrastructure spending was bound to be a good bet.

“I think generally there are two places you should buy to get your house earning more than you. One is the traditionally good markets like New Farm, Paddington, Ascot and Bulimba – they are going to continue to grow and perform. And then, for people looking for more of a speculation, there are two other areas around the city like Kelvin Grove to the north, because it has big infrastructure changes, and Albion.”

Sunshine Beach Real Estate principal Pip Covell said the sheer lack of stock in her coastal suburb had sent property prices through the roof, with the market flourishing from both interstate buyers seeking a “sea change’ and families and adult children returning home.

“The prices are still increasing. We sold the only block of land left in Sunshine Beach last weekend and it went for $2 million under the hammer … and it’s in a residential area with no sea views,” Ms Covell said.

“You’ve got this backlog of buyers that are just sitting there waiting to pounce and a lot of people want to come and live here … I think it’s this whole thing of people being able to work from home and prices are catching up because of our location and the airport.”

It’s a trend she said had flooded into the apartment market, sparking an incredible year of sales in the unit sector with spacious beachfront units now frequently fetching millions.

Queensland suburbs where unit prices rose faster than incomes
Suburb Annual change in property price Annual household income Change in property price minus annual household income
Sunshine Beach $212,500 $77,067 $135,433
Coolum Beach $181,000 $72,984 $108,016
Noosaville $132,000 $66,255 $65,745
Buddina $145,000 $79,540 $65,460
Golden Beach $108,000 $58,145 $49,855
Mooloolaba $118,000 $68,555 $49,445
Currumbin $132,500 $84,544 $47,956
Palm Beach $115,000 $70,626 $44,374
Highgate Hill $132,000 $89,030 $42,970
Coolangatta $90,000 $58,548 $31,452

Down on the Gold Coast, houses in Bundall, Miami, and Mermaid Beach far outperformed household salaries over the past year, with the unit sector also soaring.

“Interestingly it’s not just … houses – we were seeing that previously when units were stagnant – but we have sold both a house and unit for about $200,000 over what they sold for last year. The shift has been significant,” Harcourts Coastal agent Ben O’Brien said.

“But the market stock is down by less than half typically [and that’s a big challenge].”

In Bundall, the annual change in house prices reached $337,500 over the past year – more than three times that of the annual household salary of $94,899. In Miami, house prices collected $296,250 – which is just over $216,000 more than the average salary.

For units, Currumbin was the star performer with an annual price change of $132,500, compared to the household salary of just over $84,000.

“Southport is where I would put my money right now as it’s still undervalued. I see plenty of growth there,” Mr O’Brien said.


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Central Queensland

Plans Lodged for $56m Central Coast Quarter Tower

Plans have been lodged for the first stage of the $150-million Central Coast Quarter development.

The first stage of St Hilliers’ three-tower precinct at 26-30 Mann Street comprises a 25-storey mixed-use development with 136 apartments, retail and 181 car parks.

The DKO Architecture-designed north tower has been lodged as a state significant development with a construction value of about $56.7 million.

The entertainment precinct concept design approved by the Independent Planning Commission last year included a 183-room hotel, 295 apartments across two towers, commercial space, restaurants and retail space.

DKO’s design report said the development would create an “active and functional city spine”.

“The built form draws upon and celebrates Gosford’s unique identity to facilitate an attractive and desirable setting for both its residents and the public realm,” the report said.

“The landscape design will create a strong connection to the adjoining Leagues Club Field, embracing and continuing the Indigenous character from the park up through into the towers’ landscape.”

The New South Wales government earmarked the site for Gosford’s Waterfront Precinct revitalisation as it links the CBD to the waterfront and provides an opportunity for higher density.

Central Coast

▲ The Central Coast Quarter is close to Gosford City Park and overlooks Brisbane Water 

DKO Architects said the residential density of the proposed development was suitable and sustainable and consistent with Gosford’s evolution.

“Due to the site’s urban context and the nature of the project, the proposed development possesses the ability to be supported by existing and future infrastructure.

“The final outcome of the proposed development has been designed with a high level of social contribution in mind, not only to its residents.

“It will be a vibrant development that activates the street and invites residents of the proposal to interact with the local community.”

The apartments will include a mix of 14 one-bedroom apartments, 107 two-bedrooms, 14 three-bedrooms and 1 four-bedroom apartment, with 10 per cent able to be adapted for residents with disabilities.

The building has been designed to achieve 5.7-star Nathers Rating with a reduced requirement for heating and cooling.

Construction is anticipated to start in 2022.

The site was formerly the home of Gosford Public School which was demolished in 2014 for the state government to create a business precinct.

In March 2019, Property NSW sold the property to St Hilliers, with the company then building the six-storey office building and first stage of the Central Coast Quarter.

St Hilliers has already constructed a $50 million commercial building on the site in 2019, anchored by NSW Department of Finance, Services and Innovation.


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Central Queensland

Investor Market Returns to South-East Queensland

South-East Queensland

High yields and low rental vacancy rates are luring investors to south-east Queensland.

Record numbers of people have moved regionally as a result of Covid-19 and fuelled an appetite for lifestyle properties across Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast, and the Gold Coast, but investors are also moving into the market.

SQM data showed rental yields on the Sunshine and Gold coasts are high, with apartments garnering 5.3 per cent and 5.4 per cent yields respectively, while houses are about 4.7 per cent.

This is comparatively higher than Brisbane, where units are at 5.2 per cent yields and houses at 3.8 per cent.

However, comparing those to yields in Sydney and Melbourne demonstrates why investors are looking to the sunshine state.

Sydney yields are flat at 3.4 per cent for units and 2.3 per cent for houses, while Melbourne is 3.4 per cent for units, and 2.5 per cent for houses.

The problem is there is so much liquidity in the market, and south-east Queensland cannot meet investor appetite.

Rental yields: August 2021

Region Yields on units Yields on houses
Sydney 3.4% 2.3%
Melbourne 3.4% 2.5%
Brisbane 5.2% 3.8%
Sunshine Coast 5.3% 4.7%
Gold Coast 5.4% 4.6%

^Source: SQM Research

Properties on the market are at record lows across the Sunshine and Gold coasts, and Brisbane stock is at its lowest since 2010, according to SQM data.

Ray White chief economist Nerida Consibee said the flight to the Queensland coast had been in line with regional migration data across the country.

Price growth on the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast has outpaced Brisbane, according to Connisbee, who said prices on the Sunshine Coast had gone up an average of $211,790 over the course of the pandemic, while Gold Coast properties had banked an extra $181,902.

“Very high levels of migration from southern states have been a big [driver] but demand for holiday homes has also played a part,” she said.

“Victoria has played a much bigger role in price increases than prior to the pandemic—we can see this through migration levels.”

Domain’s Vacancy Rate report showed capital cities including Brisbane, Hobart and Adelaide are operating as landlord’s markets with vacancy rates that are bordering multi-year lows.

The number of rental listings across the south-east corner is low, and an average of 70 per cent of the listings have been on the market for less than 30 days.


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Central Queensland

Why demand for Queensland’s jaw-droppingly unique homes has never been stronger


As the appetite for unique high-end homes across Queensland roars beyond insatiable, the world’s attention is turning to some of the state’s most interesting luxury abodes – from historic manors in Brisbane to opulent coastal chalets.

Just a stone’s throw from the pristine Whitsunday Islands, a sprawling mansion at 5/383 Mandalay Road, Airlie Beach, has accrued incredible buyer interest from across the globe thanks to its exclusive location surrounded by national parks and the Coral Sea.

Marketed by Mark Beale of Ray White Whitsunday, it features a private helipad and an extravagant 200-square-metre main bedroom.


383 Mandalay Road, Airlie Beach QLD 4802

On the Gold Coast’s exclusive Sovereign Islands, Isaac Kim of Ivy Realty has just listed a French-colonial inspired mega-mansion at 17 Queen Anne Court with a whopping 1035 square metres of interior space.

Featuring wainscoted walls, coffered ceilings and shell-inspired French artisan lighting in the spherical main bedroom suite, the home oozes a high-end sophistication that Kim says is being embraced by prestige buyers more than ever.

“Buyers want comfort now … they can’t spend their money overseas, so they’re spending it on their homes,” he says.

The property will go to auction on August 22 in a move that speaks volumes about the appetite for singular high-end homes – properties of that calibre have traditionally been marketed in a private treaty campaign that lasted months, if not years.

In one of the Sunshine Coast’s strongest performing pockets, Sunshine Beach, a remarkable two-bedroom beach house recently hit the market for offers above $3 million thanks to its distinctive coastal design.


17 Queen Anne Court, Sovereign Islands QLD 4216 

Century 21 Conolly Hay Group principal Mike Hay is selling 16 Adams Street and says that within the first four days of marketing, he received about 100 email inquiries.

“This home has had some of the highest inquiry we’ve had on any property we’ve listed this year … and I think it’s probably because of the mixture of the modern and the original and the shape of the quintessential Australian beach house,” Hay says.

“As soon as you walk in, you feel that lovely beach vibe … in fact, you’re pretty much on a sand dune. The owner is a surfer, and she loved the idea of walking out the back gate to the beach break. It even has surfboard storage.”

Down south in Brisbane, one of the city’s most unusual and oldest manors hit the market just weeks ago in a landmark move that sparked a buyer frenzy.

Looking like the beloved family mansion of a Jane Austen protagonist, 18 Tarranalma Avenue in Clayfield offers Victorian elegance in one of the city’s blue-chip pockets. The five-bedroom residence is tipped to sell quickly thanks to the sheer rarity of the offering.


16 Adams Street, Sunshine Beach QLD 4567 

Selling agent Marianne White of Ray White Ascot says what makes homes such as Tarranalma so compelling is that they are unlikely to be replicated due to the prohibitive cost involved.

“She’s something special, and prestige buyers are searching for something very special,” she says.

It’s a sentiment shared by joint managing director of Place Estate Agents Bulimba, Sarah Hackett, who says local and overseas home-hunters are pouncing on rare luxury pads across the city at a higher rate than ever.

“We launched 107 King Arthur Terrace in Tennyson to top offers two weeks ago, and we’ve already received three contracts above $10 million,” she says.

“There never used to be $2 million sales two years ago in Brisbane … now, the strongest offer is from a local buyer, but we have an overseas buyer with an offer that’s strong, and a Sydney couple as well.”


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