Home range grows
Buyers look further afield in hunt for affordable property
REGIONAL Victoria’s more affordable property market is powering along as pricey Melbourne’s continues to cool.
The median house price in regional Victoria rose 4 per cent to $419,500 in the June quarter, almost exactly half of Melbourne’s $840,000, which has slipped 0.6 per cent.
The Real Estate Institute of Victoria’s latest figures also show the city’s median unit price rose 0.5 per cent to $604,000 in the quarter.
Half of the top 10 regional suburbs for annual median house price growth were in Geelong, affordability and proximity to Melbourne being major driving factors.
REIV president Richard Simpson said stamp duty concessions for first-home buyers introduced last July had been “a boon” for regional areas.
“A new entrant to the property market buying a house at the regional median will pay no stamp duty, while a firsthome buyer of an apartment in Melbourne at the median price would pay stamp duty of nearly $25,000,” he said.
“Whether for reasons of housing price or a change in lifestyle, more prospective buyers are willing to look to regional Victoria to purchase. The possibilities of better transport connections with Melbourne make that option even more palatable.”
Corio’s median house price rose 33 per cent to $353,000, Norlane’s 32.7 per cent to $345,000, and Newcomb’s 29.4 per cent to $440,000.
Wakelin Property Advisory director Jarrod McCabe said more people were prepared to commute to Melbourne.
“This is a familiar pattern, where upswings in the property cycle in major cities lead to growth in house prices in nearby regional centres, as people accept longer commutes to buy affordable property. The Melbourne-Geelong service is V/Line’s busiest, and there’s now serious consideration of a ferry service.
“Smaller towns within easy travelling distance from Melbourne are also performing well … Many of the most expensive areas, such as Barwon Heads, Torquay and Woodend, provide beach or country living with improved transport links to the state capital.”
CoreLogic Victorian director Geoff White said Geelong’s clearance rate of 90 per cent clearance rate last week was the strongest in the country.
Mr Simpson said regional median house price growth in the June quarter was strongest in Wonthaggi, Kyneton and Wallan. Inner Melbourne’s median house price fell 4.9 per cent to $1.459 million and middle Melbourne’s 5.4 per cent to $974,500. In outer suburbs it rose 0.5 per cent to $681,000.