Unit sales rise but me­di­ans de­cline

Unit sales in­creased through­out Queens­land in the Septem­ber quar­ter, but few ar­eas ex­pe­ri­enced me­dian price rises dur­ing the pe­riod, writes Michelle Hele

The Courier-Mail - Property - - REALESTATE INSIGHT - QUEENS­LAND’S UNIT MAR­KET

UNIT sales have in­creased in Queens­land, with those sell­ing for more than $1 mil­lion up by more than a fifth.

Ac­cord­ing to pre­lim­i­nary fig­ures from the Real Es­tate In­sti­tute of Queens­land, the num­ber of unit sales across the state rose by 14 per cent in the Septem­ber quar­ter.

This was a bet­ter re­sult than at the same time last year, when the mar­ket also per­formed ex­tremely well.

High-end units were also in de­mand, with the num­ber of units sell­ing for $1 mil­lion plus up 21 per cent dur­ing the quar­ter and 65 per cent for the year.

Bris­bane ac­counted for the largest slice of mil­lion-dol­lar - plus deals, with sales up by 41 per cent for the quar­ter and 108 per cent for the year. REIQ chief ex­ec­u­tive An­ton Kar­dash said the good re­sult of sales over $1 mil­lion could be partly at­trib­uted to the num­ber of new off-the-plan de­vel­op­ments com­pleted in Bris­bane.

There were 1448 unit sales in the Bris­bane lo­cal gov­ern­ment area in the Septem­ber quar­ter, a 13 per cent in­crease on the pre­vi­ous quar­ter.

“Dur­ing the Septem­ber quar­ter last year, we ex­pe­ri­enced a sig­nif­i­cant jump in unit sales ac­tiv­ity (in Queens­land) – up 40 per cent com­pared to the pre­vi­ous quar­ter – due to favourable stamp duty changes brought in by the State Gov­ern­ment,’’ Mr Kar­dash said.

“To again record in­creased ac­tiv­ity is a great sign that our unit mar­ket is head­ing in the right di­rec­tion.’’

Mr Kar­dash said few sub­urbs recorded sig­nif­i­cant price in­creases but he thought that was more likely to hap­pen in the next six to 12 months.

Me­di­ans only rose or re­mained sta­ble in five lo­cal gov­ern­ment ar­eas dur­ing the quar­ter, while they dropped in 12 lo­cal gov­ern­ment ar­eas, in­clud­ing Mackay, which had the big­gest drop of 19.2 per cent.

Mr Kar­dash said there was al­ways vo­latil­ity in the unit mar­ket be­cause of its size.

“What we are see­ing is ac­tu­ally all over the place gen­er­ally not much growth in prices value, but a lot of sales,’’ he said.

Cairns was a stand­out per­former dur­ing the quar­ter, with price growth and strong sales recorded.

Its me­dian rose by 10 per cent to $215,000, with 254 units sold in the re­gion in the quar­ter.

“The Cairns mar­ket has strug­gled more than most over re­cent years so this re­sult helps to partly ad­dress any price re­duc­tions it has ex­pe­ri­enced of late,’’ Mr Kar­dash said.

“There is a lot of in­ter­est from over­seas buy­ers, par­tic­u­larly with the mooted Casino up­grades. ’’

Me­dian unit prices dropped by 2.9 per cent on the Gold Coast and 2.3 per cent on the Sun­shine Coast, but both recorded stronger sales num­bers.

Statewide, Chin­chilla in the Western Downs con­tin­ued to ben­e­fit from de­mand from the min­ing in­dus­try, with its unit me­dian ris­ing by 154.7 per cent for the year. This was off a very low base me­dian of $138,012 to now be $351,500.

The worst per­former for the year statewide was Lawn­ton in More­ton Bay, where me­dian unit prices dropped 38.6 per cent for the year.

Bris­bane’s best per­former dur­ing the year was Al­bion where me­di­ans rose 41.9 per cent while the worst per­former was Wil­ston where me­di­ans dropped 30.2 per cent.

In all, 12 Bris­bane sub­urbs recorded more than 30 sales dur­ing the quar­ter, in­clud­ing Nundah, Spring Hill, New Farm and Bris­bane City, which had the high­est num­ber of sales – 89.

Surfers Par­adise had the high­est num­ber of unit sales dur­ing the quar­ter for the state, with 168 chang­ing hands.

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