Find­ing a happy me­dian

Herald Sun - Property - - NEWS - BENN DOR­RING­TON

WITH Mel­bourne’s me­dian house price nudg­ing $600,000, af­ford­able homes are get­ting harder to find across the city.

The me­dian house price jumped $47,000 to $597,000 in the 12 months to Jan­uary, new fig­ures from CoreLogic RP Data show.

But home­buy­ers hop­ing to snap up a house at that price in Mel­bourne’s in­ner suburbs will have their work cut out for them.

Bray­brook, 10km west of the city, is the only in­ner sub­urb with a me­dian price be­low the over­all city me­dian mark. Its me­dian price is $550,000. Burn­ham Real Es­tate di­rec­tor Tony Ger­ace said house prices were on the move in the ex-com­mis­sion house area. “Tra­di­tion­ally Bray­brook has had a bit of a stigma but that has slowly been erad­i­cated,” he said.

Mr Ger­ace said it was one of the last suburbs in the area where buy­ers could get a house on a 500sq m block from $500,000 to $550,000.

The rel­a­tively af­ford­able blocks of land had at­tracted devel­op­ers, which had been push­ing up house prices across the sub­urb.

In Fe­bru­ary, Mr Ger­ace sold the three-bed­room house at 5 Ken­neth St, on a 585sq m block, to an in­vestor for $570,000.

Realestate.com.au econ­o­mist Nerida Con­is­bee said it was pos­si­ble to find a three-bed­room house in the Mel­bourne me­dian price realm but most were in outer ar­eas.

“In the main, th­ese ar­eas are si­t­u­ated some dis­tance from the in­ner city and in­clude life­style lo­ca­tions such as St An­drews and Ferny Creek to es­tab­lished sub­ur­ban ar­eas such as Croy­don, Wat­so­nia and Croy­don North,” she said.

But how would a home­buyer fare with a $570,000 bud­get in other states? Their dol­lar would stretch fur­ther in half the cap­i­tal cities, in­clud­ing Bris­bane, Ade­laide and Ho­bart, where the me­dian house price is at least $100,000 less than Mel­bourne’s bench­mark.

CoreLogic RP Data se­nior re­search an­a­lyst Cameron Kusher said it was more af­ford­able for home­buy­ers to live closer to the city cen­tres in th­ese cap­i­tals.

In Bris­bane, the clos­est sub­urb un­der the Mel­bourne me­dian was Stafford Heights, 7km from the city, for $565,000, he said.

Mr Kusher said the Ade­laide sub­urb of Mile End, 3km from the CBD, had a me­dian of $560,000, while home­buy­ers could live in Ho­bart’s city cen­tre, with the me­dian price at $527,500.

Look­ing at re­cent sales in Bris­bane, buy­ers can find real bar­gains among the mid­dle suburbs near More­ton Bay, such as the ren­o­vated Queens­lan­ders at 10 Valarie St, Clon­tarf, that sold for $581,000 in Jan­uary or 97 Birk­dale Rd, Birk­dale, that fetched $570,000 in March.

In the city of churches, the tra­di­tional pe­riod home at 15 Har­ris St, Ed­ward­stown, 6km from the Ade­laide CBD, sold for $585,000 in Fe­bru­ary.

And in Ho­bart, the cap­i­tal with the low­est me­dian house price at $356,000, buy­ers re­ally have their pick of the crop.

The hill­top four-bed­room house at 26 Jind­abyne Rd, Kingston Beach, with un­in­ter­rupted bay views and just 11km from the CBD, sold in Jan­uary for $571,100, while the the idyl­lic beach­front cot­tage at 102 Pipe Clay Es­planade in Cremorne sold last Novem­ber for $575,000.

But not all cap­i­tal city ri­vals boast much bet­ter value for money than Mel­bourne.

Perth’s me­dian house price is only $57,000 less at $540,000 and Can­berra’s is on par at $595,000.

Syd­ney is in an­other league, with a me­dian house price of $880,000 and a me­dian unit price of $660,000.

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