THE LAST monthly Herron Todd White residential property report for 2019 has sent somewhat mixed messages when it comes to the Rockhampton market.
Rockhampton sits at “the bottom of the market” for houses and units on HTW’s property clocks which indicates positional change since the previous month.
The report stated that there was great market expectations for the region in the beginning of the year in the midst of numerous upcoming infrastructure projects.
However, the market “did not fully react” according to the report.
Properties priced below $250,000 were expected to move with a tightening trend in vacancy rates but it did not pan out.
“The sub $250,000 price bracket has continued to remain fairly flat,” HTW analysts said in the report.
The report found local banks had reported a definite increase in first home buyer loan applications with sights set on the $250,000 to $350,000 price point.
This left market conditions in the sub-$250,000 categories relatively unchanged from 2018.
Despite stagnation at the lower echelon of the property market, the prestige market sector had “a stellar year” with a new price ceiling achieved and an unmatched number of sales in the calendar year, compared to the number of sales in previous years.
The Capricorn Coast has led the charge with a continuation of improved activity and modest price increases for most market sectors.
Although the report states the coastal unit market and vacant land, particularly sloping allotments, remain weak.
The HTW report identified the risks pending infrastructure projects had on the local property market.
“Fortunately, we highlighted the risk of a number, if not all, of the planned infrastructure projects being unable to come to fruition as per the planned commencement dates,” the report read.
“This has indeed happened.
“While each project remains in the pipeline, only the northern access corridor and Capricorn Highway duplication have commenced construction.
“The Rookwood Weir, South Rockhampton Flood Levy and Great Keppel Island are all yet to get off the ground.”
The HTW report also found Rockhampton homeowners willing to pay for top-shelf presentation of their property were being rewarded with premium sales.
“There have been a number of cases across all locations and price points where a well-presented property has generated strong interest in the market, often attracting multiple offers, resulting in a sale price right at the upper end of a supportable market value range.”
Herron Todd White‘s report concluded by stating 2020 would be “a year to watch our local market closely”.
The Morning Bulletin – 10 December 2019