IT’S a suburb well known for its public housing and cultural diversity, but it’s now gaining a reputation for a market which draws on four corners of the globe.
Woodridge, which sits about 22km south of the CBD, is easily maligned but rarely appreciated for successfully bringing dozens of nationalities together, says local councillor Russell Lutton, who was once the local station master.
Mr Lutton challenged those that look down their nose on the suburb, to visit the Sunday market at Woodridge railway station to witness multiculturalism in full flight.
Local councillor Russell Lutton praised Woodridge for its ability to draw cultures together.
“We’ve got cultural diversity that you would not see anywhere else,” Mr Lutton said.
“If you come down to the market you will see there a Global Village market where three or four thousand people visit every Sunday.
“We have a big refugee cohort and … the suburb doesn’t get enough credit for absorbing all the cultures.”
Bang in the middle of the market action is local newsagent Tony Tjin who has been in business in Woodridge for more than 25 years.
Mr Tjin once ran a supermarket but now spends his days meeting and greeting customers from all walks of life.
“There are just so many nationalities we have people from Africa, Vietnam, Myanmar, Samoans and so on,” Mr Tjin said.
“There’s a lot of assistance within the suburb with language classes and they take them for driving lessons to help them integrate into the community.
“I know the greetings and the pleasantries of most languages which is something I’ve picked up in the shop and it makes it more personal.”
Over the years, Mr Tjin has seen many a family start life in Woodridge only to move on, but that’s not such a given these days.
Two of the most telling examples of locals calling Woodridge home forever were local lottery winners, said Mr Tjin.
“We’ve had a couple of people win division one lotto and they could have moved out, but they stayed in the community,” he said.
Tony Tjin has operated a newsagency in Woodridge for almost three decades. Picture: Darren Cartwright
Not only is Woodridge known for an eclectic mix of cultures, but also for being heavily family orientated.
According to the latest ABS Census, of the 12,579 residents, 24 per cent are 14-years-of-age or younger.
The average age of the local population is 32 which is five years below the state average and six years below the national average of 38.
The high number of families has both to do with the migrant intake but also the affordability of the suburb, says John Ahern Real Estate principal John Ahern.
“It’s good for community services which assist the refugees and migrants,” Mr Ahern said.
“You’ll find in any major city there are lower socio economic areas and Brisbane is no different and Woodridge is where you have a mixture of people because it’s a great starting point.
“First home buyers are quite noticeable in the area because not everyone wants a big mortgage and it offers great value for money.”
The median house price is tracking at $300,000 this year which is slightly down on 2016 ($303,300) but still well up on 2015 ($277,000).
The affordability factor certainly hasn’t been lost on interstate investors who are parking their money in Woodridge.
Of the some 550 properties Ahern Real Estate manages, some 30 of them have been owned by long term investors.
“One of our biggest buyers is investors,” he said.
“About 41 per cent of the properties are rented which is a reasonably high percentage compared to some of the other suburbs closer to the city because it’s both affordable for buyers and renters.
“I’ve been in business 37 years and we’ve had more than 30 people who had investment properties with us for more than twenty years.”
The low median house price means the suburb is not being picked-off by professional renovators looking to ‘flip’ a house for quick profit.
Mr Ahern said sales over $500,000 are “pretty rare” which means there’s little profit to be made in purely renovating houses for immediate resale although that won’t last forever.
“There’s a little bit of flipping (houses) where we get the builder handyman person who add some value and tidy it up then sell it, but not major renovations,” he said.
Trinder Park railway station is one of three stations to service the area. Picture: Darren Cartwright
While there are plenty of social services for those in need, there are also plenty of schools to accommodate the young families with no fewer than five schools including the highly culturally diverse Woodridge State High, Woodridge State primary School, St Paul’s Catholic Primary School and Harris Fields State School in the region.
The suburb is also well served by two railway stations, Woodridge and Trinder Park, and an extensive bus service, including a regular service to Garden City.
A police beat has recently opened across from Woodridge Station and which was welcomed by the community, said Mr Tjin.
“I’ve live here for more than 25 years and I’ve seen it cleaned up a lot but I’d like to see more foot patrol with police,” he said.
“The police beat has moved in a few months ago which has helped a lot but there are still a few rat bags around but you are going to get that no matter where you go.”
Originally Published: www.couriermail.com.au
Brisbane apartment owners take massive hits as prices hit four-year low, values plunging
If you needed a sign Brisbane has an apartment oversupply, a two-bedroom unit with city views in one of the most trendy suburbs has just gone for $50,000 less than it was bought for two years ago.
Top five reasons for apartment price plunge:
- Crackdown on foreign lending
- Banks requiring higher deposits from domestic buyers
- APRA cap on interest-only loans
- Tougher lending criteria for developers
Supplied: Property economist Peter Wargent – Wargent Advisory 2018
The Paddington unit, which sold for $440,000 after it was renovated, is just one of hundreds of units that have crashed in value since an apartment construction boom created an oversupply, with no end in sight.
It is not just small units affected, either. A big three-bedroom pad in South Brisbane is now on the market for $799,000, which is what it was sold for brand new 10 years ago.
A luxury three-bedroom unit at Toowong that would have snared up to $950,000 at sale two years ago has lost about $100,000 in value because of the soft market, according to its seller.
There are also plenty of investment units in middle-ring suburbs like Lutwyche, Mount Gravatt, Albion or Kelvin Grove.
Units in Kelvin Grove’s Urban Village that were valued at $450,000 two years ago are now going for $399,000.
Agents in those areas are “submitting all offers” and taking buyers’ low bids very seriously.
Unit prices down 4.5 per cent in 12 months
The latest Domain House and Apartment Price Report found Brisbane units prices were now at a four-year low, with a decline of 2.2 per cent over the December quarter to $385,955.
Domain data scientist Nicola Powell said that was a 4.5 per cent drop compared to last year.
“The surge of new apartments in Brisbane remains ahead of the demand,” Dr Powell said.
“Although this continues to impact unit prices, population increases and a slowdown of new developments and completions may work together to help balance the market.”
Owners accepting ‘cheeky’ offers from buyers
Space Property agent Nicole Devine had to break the bad news to her Paddington vendors about their city-view unit.
“Sellers really have to be honest with themselves and take feedback,” she said.
“They can still can have a dream price, but have to be realistic and listen to market as well.”
National Property Research Company director Matthew Gross said buyers had done their sums in this oversupplied market, and they were being cheeky.
“I think buyers have always been cheeky but now they are allowed to be cheeky,” he said.
“They are going in and offering that 5 per cent to 10 per cent under the price, particularly for the established market, and they are getting results.
“It certainly is a buyer’s market, but not everyone has to sell.
“What you are doing is playing a numbers game. But at the end of the day if you like the property, make an offer.”
Rental income falling, less foreign investors
Property economist Peter Wargent said there were plenty of examples of falling rents, especially in the inner-city areas. There was also quite a bit of risk in the new or off-the-plan apartment sector.
“Lending to developers for new projects has been severely tightened,” Mr Wargent said.
“We are seeing almost no lending now to offshore buyers, except to New Zealanders.”
Mr Wargent said there were also higher deposit requirements for many investors to buy in inner-city at about 20 per cent to 30 per cent.
“The regulatory crackdown by APRA, which is now limiting the flow of new interest-only loans to investors in particular, is also discouraging investors, as is falling rents,” he said.
Mr Wargent said the Queensland Government’s move to hit foreign investors with a new property tax had also significantly impacted the market.
“It sent out a strong message that was not necessarily well received, so I’d say the Brisbane apartment market will remain pretty flat this year,” he said.
GFC and floods impact price: agent
Position Property’s Bradley Munro is confident his three-bedroom South Brisbane unit will sell to an owner-occupier couple who are downsizing.
Mr Munro blames the stagnant 10-year old price on the fact “we have had the GFC and the floods” during that time.
“Now we are going through a slightly different market in Brisbane so it is not surprising, given the last 10 years,” he said.
“Without those things it would be a different story.”
Developer incentives, saving up to $50,000
Although the number of new inner-city projects coming online have slowed to a crawl, developer incentives were still on offer.
Mr Gross said first homeowner grants of $20,000 were being matched by some developers to help keep the prices for new apartments up.
One project at Enoggera is pitching its sales at ‘”re-construction prices — save up to $50,000″, but that is not unusual either.
Coronis Agent Gerard Hawes said the investor market dried up in 2017 due to the crackdown on foreign investors.
“For those people looking for decent market value, our foreign investors did tend to push the values up on that property,” Mr Hawes said.
“So we have seen a bit of kickback of around 10 per cent across the board.”
There are always exceptions in a downturn, particularly at the top end of the market.
Boutique blocks like the London Residences at West End are selling to cashed-up buyers who have sold up in the suburbs.
As a sweetener, the 26 owners also go into a draw for a luxury car worth more than $90,000.
Originally Published: abc.net.au
Property sales strong as Mango Hill house listed for $1.1 million
North Lakes is one of the top three outer Brisbane areas where property prices are appealing to more homebuyers, new figures reveal.
It was one of seven suburbs within the greater Brisbane region where more than 400 houses were sold in the past 12 months, according to new figures from CoreLogic.
Caboolture leads the pack with 492 houses sold, with Morayfield close behind with 452 sales.
North Lakes recorded 436 house sales during the period and all seven suburbs had median house prices of less than $490,000.
Amanda Pearce from Raine & Horne North Lakes said the area’s attractiveness for families was one of the main reasons people wanted to move here.
“When I’m talking to my clients and asking them why they are looking to move to North Lakes, there is usually more than one reason,” she said.
“They have heard that North Lakes is not just a community but a family and they want their kids to grow up where they can go to school with the same friends.
“More than 60 per cent of the North Lakes population are families with children.”
Ms Pearce said some of her clients were either moving from interstate to get away from city life, or because the suburb had everything they wanted nearby.
She said more than 680 houses, units and lots had been sold since January 1 last year.
“The change in the median house price in 2017 in North Lakes was at plus 3.28 per cent compared to the Moreton Bay region, which was plus 2.73 per cent,” Ms Pearce said.
Raine & Horne’s Adam Ingram said shopping and transport facilities also added to the attractiveness of the North Lakes area.
Matt Goodall from NVRE Agents at Narangba has a house at Mango Hill listed for sale for offers of more than $1.1 million.
He said as far as he knew nothing had previously sold for the magic million-dollar mark at Mango Hill.
“It is the first of its kind at the moment,” he said.
Mr Goodall said the two-storey house was a standout in the street, as it was on a slightly elevated block.
“It has a unique design and certainly won’t suit everyone that comes through,” he said.
Originally Published: moretoninvestor.com.au
Queensland’s million dollar club booming as home values surge
MORE Queensland homeowners are now millionaires, with new research revealing a near 50 per cent jump in the number of million dollar suburbs in the past decade.
By the end of 2017, the state had 38 suburbs with a median home value of $1 million or higher — 15 more than the year before, according to property research firm, CoreLogic.
While traditional blue-chip pockets such as Ascot, Hamilton and New Farm have stood the test of time — making the million dollar club every year since 2007 — it’s the new kids on the block that may come as a surprise.
The little known Queensland suburbs of Willawong, Mount Samson and Kalinga have all cracked the million-dollar value ceiling in the past year.
And for the first time, Wilston, West End, Paddington, Hendra, Highgate Hill, Ashgrove and Auchenflower have burst through the $1 million median home value barrier.
On the Gold Coast, Surfers Paradise has made the million dollar club nine out of the past 10 years, while Bundall is a newcomer.
Further north on the Sunshine Coast, Shelly Beach in Caloundra made the list for the first time ever in 2017, joining the usual suspects of Noosa Heads and Sunshine Beach.
In the state’s north, Castle Hill in Townsville is the only suburb to achieve million-dollar status, while in central Queensland, the holiday resort town of 1770 has made the list several times over the past decade.
Even the Logan suburb of Park Ridge joined the club briefly for a year in 2010.
The number of suburbs in Queensland with a median home value of $1 million or more grew by 48 per cent in the past ten years.
CoreLogic research analyst Cameron Kusher said he expected that growth to continue in 2018, although perhaps not at the same rate as in the past 12 months.
“What we’re seeing in southeast Queensland at the moment is migration is picking up,” Mr Kusher said.
“I think Queensland might see more million dollar suburbs over the next 12 to 24 months as that level of migration continues to picks up.
“But I wouldn’t be surprised if the jump (in values) is not as substantial in 2018 as it was in 2017.”
Mr Kusher said it would only be a matter of time before home values in more of Brisbane’s inner ring suburbs pushed through the $1 million barrier, as well as more suburbs on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.
“That inner ring has been quite strong for houses over the past 12 months or so and clearly lack of supply in the detached housing market and strong demand is pushing up values, which is what you’d expect,” he said.
Robert Evans saw the potential in the north Brisbane suburb of Hendra a few years ago when he bought a block of land and built a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house at 18 Harding Street.
Mr Evans has used the architecturally designed home as an investment property and enjoyed healthy rental returns, but is taking it to auction later this month.
“There’s no other house like it in Hendra,” Mr Evans said.
Hendra is only 6km from Brisbane’s CBD and the median house value in the suburb is now$1.00784 million.
“It’s a good area, it’s quiet, close to the airport and offers good yields,” Mr Evans said.
“That’s why we built there.”
Marketing agent Leigh Kortlang of Ray White Ascot has been selling real estate in Hendra for nearly 15 years and has seen home values rise considerably in that time.
“When I moved to Hendra 18 years ago, people said ‘what are you doing crossing the train tracks’,” she said.
“People started moving in to the area because it was a bit cheaper than surrounding suburbs (like Ascot, Hamilton and Clayfield), but now it’s on everyone’s shopping list because they actually want to live in Hendra.”
Ms Kortlang said the suburb was considered “a bit more laid-back”, with quiet, wide streets lined with Poinsiana trees and bigger blocks of land.
Between 2012 and 2017 — when the Sydney and Melbourne housing markets entered an upswing — the number of $1 million suburbs nationally increased by a whopping 243 per cent.
And by the end of last year, almost 1000 suburbs across the country hit the million dollar median value mark.
But Mr Kusher said he did not expect the surge in home values in Sydney and Melbourne to continue this year.
“With the national housing market slowing over the final quarter of 2017, we may actually see fewer suburbs with a million dollar price tag at the end of 2018,” Mr Kusher said.
“In fact, the current data points to the fact that the housing slowdown, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne, is being led by the higher value end of the market.
“As a result, this may lead to a number of $1 million suburbs slipping out of the list in the two largest housing markets over the coming year.”
QUEENSLAND’S NEW MILLION DOLLAR CLUB
Suburb House/unit Median value
Ascot House $1,639,995
Ashgrove House $1,009,882
Auchenflower House $1,106,010
Broadbeach Waters House $1,134,991
Brookfield House $1,022,382
Bulimba House $1,199,385
Bundall House $1,070,066
Burbank House $1,113,467
Castaways Beach House $1,057,405
Castaways Beach Unit $1,241,197
Chandler House $1,336,866
Chelmer House $1,183,319
Clayfield House $1,140,050
Clear Island Waters House $1,151,038
Fig Tree Pocket House $1,028,710
Fortitude Valley House $1,018,262
Hamilton House $1,417,327
Hawthorne House $1,196,229
Hendra House $1,007,840
Highgate Hill House $1,062,097
Kalinga House $1,133,852
Main Beach House $1,674,362
Mermaid Beach House $1,399,733
Minyama House $1,057,460
Mount Samson House $1,038,904
New Farm House $1,407,876
Noosa Heads House $1,004,007
Paddington House $1,077,237
Pullenvale House $1,088,506
Shelly Beach House $1,002,906
St Lucia House $1,197,301
Sunshine Beach House $1,363,637
Surfers Paradise House $1,332,778
Teneriffe House $1,589,892
Tennyson Unit $1,104,751
West End House $1,002,369
Willawong House $1,224,624
Wilston House $1,064,768
(Source: CoreLogic, data current to end of 2017)
Originally published: news.com.au
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