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Sunshine State property market set to shine this year


By Nicola McDougall, The Female Investor

Queensland has been on the radar of property investors for a few years now, but until two years ago, nothing much happened pricewise for a long while, which was very annoying for those of us with portfolios in the Sunshine State.

Successive investor sentiment surveys from the Property Investment Professionals of Australia even picked Brisbane as the capital city with the best investment prospects for the best part of five years.

There’s no denying that property markets in Queensland were rather underwhelming for about a decade courtesy, mainly, of a sluggish economy.

However, while property prices didn’t increase by much more than a tickle most years, there was plenty going on behind the scenes to improve the state’s economy, including a multibillion-dollar major infrastructure program that is now well under way.

On top of all that, Brisbane then turned around and won the rights to the 2032 Olympic Games mid-pandemic, which is set to supercharge the entire southeast corner for the next decade.

So, after that little history lesson, what’s ahead for Sunshine State property markets this year? According to various experts, it’s set to be the star performer across the nation for all these reasons and more.

Melinda Jennison, Managing Director and Buyers’ Agent at Streamline Property Buyers believes the start of the year will herald an increase in buyer and renter activity in the state capital.

“We do expect that the buyer depth will return quickly early in the New Year as those who are relocating become buyers who will compete with the already heightened demand here in Brisbane,” Ms Jennison said.

“Of course, not all people who relocate will buy, so we also expect a further tightening in rental vacancies early in 2022.

“With Brisbane already experiencing a tight rental market, it is likely that tenants will find it even more difficult to secure a property as more people compete for limited stock.”

Melinda Jennison, Managing Director and Buyers' Agent, Streamline Property Buyers

She said housing affordability may become a problem later in 2022, which would slow its strong rate of price growth, however, that was not a certainty to happen this year either.

“Additionally, further tightening of credit policies and increases in fixed interest rates could slow some of the housing activity or even an increase in listings, which is a trend already observed in Sydney and Melbourne,” she said.

“That said, there are no signs of any of the above at this stage. Brisbane property growth is leading the nation and we expect this may continue in the months ahead.”

The Sunshine Coast was one of the nation’s best performers in 2021 as buyers from near and far chased lifestyle, with property prices in the region soaring by a staggering 30 per cent over the year.

According to Billy Mitchell, Principal of Century 21 Platinum Agents and Century 21 Lifestyle Caloundra, the region’s strong market conditions are not showing signs of abating anytime soon.

“It’s hard to see any of the sectors slowing down anytime soon. The region from Caloundra to Gympie is experiencing some of the best market conditions on record – including the commercial sector,” Mr Mitchell said.

“But it’s not just because of the pandemic, the region was undergoing significant transformation long before COVID-19 darkened our doors, with billions of dollars of major infrastructure projects under way.

“If I was going to pinpoint one sector that might outperform all the other strong performers, then I’d suggest that the farming and lifestyle sectors in the Gympie region, which have been firing on all cylinders and have plenty more gas in the tank, too.”

Billy Mitchell, Principal of Century 21 Platinum Agents and Century 21 Lifestyle Caloundra

As we near the two-year anniversary from when the pandemic changed all of our lives, it seems that it will have a lasting impact on the property sector, too.

Adam Empringham, Sales Director at Image Property, said people were now assessing real estate and their homes differently than they did before.

“The surprising factor is that the value that Australians now put in the space that they call home, they’re putting so much more value in the type of property it is, the size of the property it is, because they’ve become accustomed now to spending more time there,” Mr Empringham said.

“I think is still going to continue to be a factor. That’s where we might see more renovations happening and we’ll see probably some different styles of property come to market with a lot more emphasis on studies and home offices.”

Adam Empringham, Sales Director at Image Property

It is a sentiment echoed by Ms Jennison, who said there was increasing demand from buyers for bigger homes.

“The shift towards larger family homes with areas to work from home has become a trend in Brisbane with higher density living now seen as less favourable,” she said.

“Demand for housing has been greater than units and also vacancy rates in areas dominated by houses, rather than units, has been much tighter.  We expect this trend to continue into 2022 as more property buyers value space, lifestyle, and lower density living.”

Nicola McDougall


The Female Investor

Main image: Freepik

Nicola McDougall