GOLD COAST BULLETIN: THERE is more evidence the Gold Coast property market is heating up, with some suburbs that enjoy waterfront views experiencing an unprecedented 25 per cent spike in land values.
Queensland’s Valuer General has released annual valuations for more than 141,000 properties in the city, showing land values on October 1 last year had increased by 14.4 per cent.
The top suburbs are Runaway Bay (25 per cent), Broadbeach (25 per cent), Bilinga (24.4 per cent) and Labrador (22.9 per cent).
Real estate and industry insiders are cautious of talking about a boom but those at the coalface say the property market began to heat up last October, with the best results for many waterfront suburbs since the Global Financial Crisis in 2008.
Some Labrador homes worth $145,000 about 15 years ago were now being marketed at more than $700,000, he said.
Area councillor Margaret Grummitt, a former policewoman, was celebrating the figures yesterday, aware the council and the police had worked hard since 2000 on measures to reduce crime in the suburb, once branded “Stabrador”.
“Everyone wants a water view,” she said.
“There are new blocks with $800,000 units.”
Several agents agreed that unprecedented demand since the GFC was due to a lack of housing stock, the return of tradies working on major projects, along with Chinese investors and buyers from interstate.
Real Estate Institute of Queensland Gold Coast chairman, John Newlands, said buyers had the confidence to move on residential properties, with “the action in $450,000 to $600,000 range”.
“I don’t know if we are heading into a boom as such but there’s renewed confidence in the marketplace,” Mr Newlands said.
“People want to buy.”
Property Council of Australia Gold Coast executive director Chris Mountford said there was strong growth in apartment sales.
“I think there’s a return of confidence on the Gold Coast in terms of property development in particular. I think it’s a good story,” he said.
Sustainable Development Gold Coast president Byyn Lummus said construction of major infrastructure projects and enthusiasm for the Games, along with tourism and foreign investment, was driving the market.
The Gold Coast Bulletin earlier this week reported on a $3 billion construction boom which will see the northern suburbs become the city’s “jobs engineroom”.
“This has helped better insulate the Gold Coast from problems experienced elsewhere in Queensland and keeps our unemployment low,” Mr Lummus said.
“This has built a demand for Gold Coast property,”
The increases had started from a very low base and the strong growth reflected that the Coast had yet to have a recovery period, post-GFC.
“Sydney and Melbourne have seen strong growth over a number of years and in a very typical cyclical fashion this leaves Gold Coast property being a very attractive proposition comparatively,” Mr Lummus said.
“In addition, we are also seeing a tightening of bank lending for apartment developments in Brisbane, where a unit oversupply is expected in 2016.
“This is focusing the attention of investors elsewhere, including the Gold Coast.”
While SDGC’s valuers did not believe the city was entering a boom similar to previous highs, especially from 2003 to 2007, there was “still a risk of a boom-and-bust’ scenario” if the employment base did not improve.
Homeowners in the booming suburbs were expected to be spared major rate increases but would have to pay more in land tax.
Council finance committee chairman William Owen-Jones said: “The valuations are a positive reflection of the uplift in confidence in the Gold Coast economy.
“The rating categories are adjusted to reflect those increases, so the full values are never passed on to the average general rate.”
Council planning committee chairman Cameron Caldwell was not surprised by the strong land value increase at Runaway Bay.
“It’s a fantastic suburb,’ he said.
“The economy has bounced back and the very good suburbs always come back to what they should be.”
Original article by Paul Weston- Gold Coast Bulletin