It’s the annual winter prestige property pilgrimage from the southern states to the Sunshine Coast that leading local agent Vicki Stewart has come to know so well.
“People from Sydney and Melbourne come up the first year and fall in love with the climate and the area,” says Ms Stewart, the director of Stewart Property. “They return the next year and don’t want to go home again, so start looking at places to buy.
“And by the third year, they come, and just never go home.”
She did exactly the same thing too, 34 years ago, on a visit from Sydney, and says that migration from daydreamer to new owner causes a dramatic spike this time every year in the market.
Real Estate Institute of Queensland chief executive Antonia Mercorella agrees. “Many travel for a holiday and fall in love with our world-class beaches, fine dining and luxury retail shopping precincts,” she says.
“The seeds are planted and while our prices are high compared with the rest of Queensland, when compared with Sydney or Melbourne prices they’re an absolute bargain.”
At the same time Noosa, at the top of the Sunshine Coast market, has been performing exceptionally well and in the 12 months to March 2019 has hit 8.7 per cent growth, making it Queensland’s strongest area, as against Brisbane’s one to 3 per cent, and the Gold Coast’s 2 to 3 per cent. Since 2014, Noosa prices have risen 44 per cent.
There have been some stellar sales too in the past 18 months, including the $15.2 million sale of tennis ace Pat Rafter’s mansion on Noosa’s Sunshine Beach, followed by the Sunshine Coast record-breaking $18 million purchase of a seven-bedroom trophy home nearby. “But as a general rule of thumb, what you’d buy in Sydney for $20 million will cost you just $8 million here,” says Ms Stewart.
Domestic tourism – of which this coastal region is “the Australian rock star” according to Visit Sunshine Coast chief executive Simon Latchford – always sparks the property market, while its “Hamptons-style cool” continues to drive it on and up.
“The market does leverage off tourism but, often, as soon as people arrive they realise its strengths,” Mr Latchford says. “There are two airports, lots of new infrastructure, a laid-back lifestyle, an extraordinary climate with no cyclones, crocs or box jellyfish, a community atmosphere in a place that hasn’t been allowed to develop too fast, and Brisbane is only an hour and a half away.
“If you want to savour life as it was back in the ’70s, then this place can offer that environment.”
The prestige market from $5 million to $12 million is particularly strong at the moment, with demand surging and stock so tight that one buyer bought a home at Noosa Heads in the past few weeks for $2.9 million over the phone, sight unseen.
“We now have a lot of buyers making multiple offers and there’s not much stock as people are making generational purchases; they’re planning to keep it long-term and hand it down to family rather than sell it,” says agent Nic Hunter from Tom Offermann Real Estate.
“Noosa has always been the pinnacle of that prestige end of the market, and people just love the relaxed lifestyle and village atmosphere.”
Four homes in the area
For sale by informal tender with a guide of more than $4 million, this five-bedroom home has a spectacular waterfront position, with beautiful mountain views and a peaceful position.
“As with all the best homes on the Sunshine Coast, you have to consider the cost of not buying now,” says agent Adrian Reed of Reed & Co.
With deepwater access and an upgraded pontoon to allow the owner to keep anything up to a 58-footer safely moored at home, this family house was designed by Frank Macchia to have a true north aspect.
The home has an in-ground pool and a steam-room, while a recently-installed solar system generates over 100kWh of power in summer and is fitted has battery storage.
It’s going to auction on July 14 through Loren Wimhurst of Next Property Group, with a guide of $4.5 million to $5.5 million.
Floor-to-ceiling windows in almost every room make sure that the stunning views are maximised and that this house is flooded in natural light.
The media room has its own cosy fireplace, there are electric shutters and blinds and an openable roof to control light and temperatures, and underfloor heating on the ground level and in the bathrooms that service the master bedroom.
The home is for sale with a guide of $3.3 million, with Joe Langley of Universal Property Sales.
Billed as a 6-star resort-style home, this home has great north-east ocean views and is just a short stroll to the beach, cafes and shops from its large 1,200sqm block.
There’s an internal lift to each floor, a grand entry foyer, a sound-proofed cinema, in-ground pool and pool room, with landscaped gardens.
It’s for sale with a guide of $3.3 million, through agent Craig Porter of Next Property Group.
Brisbane auction record smashed with $8.4 million Bulimba sale
Brisbane’s auction record has been smashed with the $8.4 million sale of a riverfront home at Bulimba, making it the city’s most expensive property ever sold under the hammer.
The five-bedroom European-style mansion at 95-99 McConnell Street had attracted potential buyers from across the globe due to its prized north-facing riverfront position sprawled over 1473 square metres of land with 32 metres of river frontage.
But it was two local Brisbane families, both intent on buying the property to live in with their young children, who battled it out on Wednesday night in one of the most furiously fast-paced auctions marketing agent Sarah Hackett of Place Estate Agents Bulimba had ever seen.
“It was very high intensity, it was absolutely unbelievable to watch,” Ms Hackett said. “Both families were very emotionally connected to the property and wanted it badly.
Brisbane’s most expensive auction sales
|95-99 McConnell Street||Bulimba||2019||$8.4 million|
|39 Griffith Street||New Farm||2019||$7.75 million|
|22 Sandford Street||St Lucia||2009||$7.75 million|
|29 Laurence Street||St Lucia||2010||$7 million|
|78 Jilba Street||Indooroopilly||2007||$6.1 million|
|20 Scott Street||Hawthorne||2017||$5.6 million|
|22 Langside Road||Hamilton||2016||$5,385,000|
|34 Quay Street||Bulimba||2016||$5.33 million|
|14 Otway Street||Holland Park||2016||$5,225,000|
|9 Griffith Street||New Farm||2013||$5.2 million|
“Bidding started at $5.5 million, went straight up to $6 million, then it was pretty much $100,000 bids at a time from there. It was back and forth, back and forth – the time between bids was literally seconds. It was amazing to watch.”
The previous record for a property sold at auction in Brisbane was $7.75 million, which was first set in 2009 with the sale of a grand riverfront estate at Sandford Street, St Lucia, then equalled in March this year when 39 Griffith Street, New Farm sold under the hammer. It was purchased by Ben Seymour, the grandson of Queensland rich-lister and developer Kevin Seymour.
Ms Hackett said it was an emotionally charged auction because properties of this calibre in Brisbane were rare.
“I’ve got one buyer absolutely elated and over the moon and one buyer absolutely heart broken,” she said.
“We’re currently at an all-time record low for riverfront stock in Brisbane at the moment, so sadly I don’t have anything else comparable to offer them at the moment.”
The winning bidders, a young family with two boys, were keen fishermen looking forward to enjoying the riverfront lifestyle, Ms Hackett said.
“This is a purchase made for the whole family. They want their kids to have that riverfront lifestyle, they’ve already got a tinny and the kids are super excited,” she said.
The kids won’t even have to share – the property has not one, but two private deep water mooring pontoons, as well as a pool, flat landscaped backyard and multiple living areas inside, all with spectacular water views that stretch across the river to Hamilton Hill.
Revealed: The Brisbane suburbs that defied the housing downturn
BRISBANE has emerged the capital city least affected by the housing downturn, according to new evidence revealing the suburbs that recorded double-digit growth over the past year.
It has been a tough year for the nation’s residential property market, but new research from realestate.com.au shows the Queensland capital weathered the storm better than most capital cities.
Brisbane took out three of the top 10 national spots for suburbs that defied the downturn and recorded double-digit growth in the 12 months to September — the only city to do so apart from Adelaide, which also had three suburbs in the top 10.
House prices in Chelmer, Northgate and Ipswich jumped at a time when most suburbs around the nation were going backwards.
Chelmer and Northgate even beat the affluent suburb of Vaucluse in Sydney.
From waterfront enclaves to first homebuyer hot spots, Greater Brisbane’s lifestyle, affordability, amentiy and access to jobs proved just how resilient the city’s housing market is.
The leafy riverside suburb of Chelmer, in Brisbane’s west, recorded the strongest house price growth of 31 per cent year-on-year in the 12 months to the end of August, according to realestate.com.au.
The phenomenal growth saw Chelmer’s median house price increase to $1.29 million.
Chelmer residents David and Yvonne Todd are selling their stunning, five-bedroom Georgian-style house at 17 Lama Street after living there for 11 years.
Mr Todd said he was not surprised by the growth in the suburb because it had so much to offer.
“There’s certainly been a lot of investment in the area from people improving their properties, so we’re certainly very cognicant of the suburb’s performance,” Mr Todd said.
The couple was initially attracted to Chelmer because of its proximity to good schools, the fact it was on the train line and the community feel of the suburb.
“What is interesting in the area is there seems to be a huge amount of people who live all their lives here, but might move within the area,” Mr Todd said.
Now that their three children have grown up and left home, the Todds are looking to downsize and plan to spend more time in Europe.
“My wife is a photographer and our youngest son is in Europe … so what we need is more of a lock up and go, rather than a family home,” Mr Todd said.
Ann-Karyn Fraser of Place Estate Agents, who is marketing the home, said she had noticed the increase in house prices in Chelmer and the continued strong interest in the suburb and the surrounding suburbs of Graceville and Sherwood.
“I put it down to the liveability of the suburb,” Ms Fraser said.
“The community Chelmer embraces is so rare and that’s why so many people flock there — the beautiful homes, the infrastructure we have, the schooling, the railway line, and the easy access to the CBD.”
Northgate experienced house price growth of 25 per cent in the year to September, despite general weakness in the overall housing market.
Unlike Chelmer, it has a more affordable median house price of $733,500, but bargains are becoming harder to find.
Rebecca and Marko Vuksanovic have just sold their house at 51 Junior Terrace in Northgate for $1.05 million, making a healthy profit on what they bought it for six years ago.
“We were quite pleasantly surprised,” Mrs Vuksanovic said.
“It was a bit of a record for this little pocket and sold after the first open home.”
The couple are relocating overseas, but could not be happier to have invested in the suburb.
“It was perfect for us,” Mrs Vuksanovic said.
“My husband and I both work locally, it’s got awesome proximity to the city, the airport and freeways north and south.
“We just think it’s the perfect suburb.”
Selling agent Dwight Colbert of Ray White – Aspley Group said he had noticed “continuously strong” growth in Northgate in the six years he had been selling homes there.
Mr Colbert said he had sold more than 20 homes in the suburb in the past 12 months and part of its appeal to buyers was its proximity to the airport, Northgate train station and the CBD.
“I think everyone thinks Northgate is the older suburb, with older homes, but … people udnerestimate the value of the homes in Northgate,” Mr Colbert said.
“It is now becoming one of those attraction locations people want to be in.”
The Ipswich region also featured prominently on the list of suburbs to record double digit house price growth in the year to September.
The median house price in Ipswich rose 20 per cent to hit $385,000, while North Ipswich experienced 12 per cent growth and Ripley recorded an 11 per cent increase in its median house price to $415,000.
On the Gold Coast, premium suburbs with homes with $1 million-plus price tags recorded the highest growth.
Suburbs such as Kingscliff, Paradise Point, Clear Island Waters, and Surfers Paradise weathered the downturn — recording double digit price growth.
Now that buyers are back and auction clearance rates are improving, some experts are calling the bottom of the market.
SQM Research managing director Louis Christopher said he believed Brisbane home prices were “close to fair value” after an extended period where there was a wind-down of housing prices relative to incomes.
“The worst overvaluation recorded was early 2008 whereby the market was 45 per cent overvalued,” Mr Christopher said.
“This occurred as a result of the Brisbane housing boom of 2003 to 2008 — a period where housing prices doubled in just five years.”
Mr Christopher expects the Brisbane market to respond to recent interest rate cuts and relative loose credit for the remainder of the year.
“We are forecasting a 0.6 per cent rise in housing prices for the current September quarter and a further 1.5 per cent for the December quarter,” he said.
REVEALED: The waterfront Gold Coast suburbs where house prices are climbing
It’s been revealed the Gold Coast property market is on the rise, with fresh data showing our waterfront suburbs have recorded a generous growth in house prices.
According to realestate.com.au, a number of coast suburbs with over $1 million price tags strongly defied the recent property downturn, recording double-digit year-on-year growth.
House prices in Paradise Point, Clear Island Waters, Surfers Paradise and Jacobs Well all grew by at least ten per cent or more in the past 12 months.
But it was our neighbours over the border in Kingscliff who took out the top spot, with a massive growth of sixteen per cent.
Maudsland, Palm Beach, Tweed Heads South, Tweed Heads West and Casuarina also made the list, with growth ranging from 5% to 8%.
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