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Becoming an owner occupier in an inner-city dwelling can offer advantages for the scrupulous buyer, writes Hayley Goddard
BUYING in Melbourne’s maligned CBD apartment market can pay off. Despite fears of an apartment glut, owner occupiers and investors can find worthwhile housing options in the city, according to REA Group chief economist Nerida Conisbee.
Ms Conisbee, who is speaking at the Property Buyer Expo in Melbourne this weekend, believes owner occupiers can do “really well” if they consider high-rise living in the city’s centre as long as they aren’t looking to make a quick profit.
“Melbourne is pro-development and we do tend to overbuild, so if you want to hold on to the property it is a market you can consider,” she said.
Ms Conisbee said apartments were an affordable option for inner-city living for buyers who might otherwise be pushed 20km out of the CBD, with older units offering the best value.
“There are probably bigger bargains in established apartments than buying off the plan if you’re an Australian resident because offshore buyers are restricted to buying new,” she said.
For investors, Ms Conisbee said research on the market and the type of tenant an apartment was likely to attracted was key.
“Values have gone backward but rental growth is there,” she said.
“Make sure you understand the size of it. There is high concern for lower cost and very small apartments.”
When deciding where to buy, Ms Conisbee said city apartments with views or at the top end of town near Spring St were be a good bet.
“Don’t be too scared but go in with your eyes open. It’s a market you need to be careful in,” she said.
Ms Conisbee said approval rates had slowed to put a bit of a stop on future supply and calm the market. For more information, visit propertybuyerexpo.com.au