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Tale of two cities: House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side



House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

Demand for houses in Brisbane has become a tale of two cities.Source:Getty Images

THE territorial divide between Brisbane’s north and south is widening, with new figures revealing house hunters are ditching one side of the river for the other in droves.

Demand for houses in Brisbane’s east has jumped more than 22 per cent in the past 12 months, but only a few kilometres away on the northside, the appetite for houses has dropped nearly 2 per cent.

New research from paints a tale of two cities within the Queensland capital, with parts of the city a clear seller’s market and other parts providing an opportunity for buyers to grab a bargain.

House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

Aerial images of suburban houses in Brisbane’s inner north.Source:News Corp Australia

In Brisbane’s eastern suburbs, house prices have risen 6.5 per cent in just the past quarter, while in the north, they only rose 1 per cent. chief economist Nerida Conisbee said the drop in demand for houses in Brisbane’s north could be explained by a steady rise in prices there in recent years.

“Typically when we see a drop in views per listing, it’s related to a lot of new development or the fact pricing is getting a bit too expensive and people back off,” Ms Conisbee said.

“I think maybe that’s what’s been happening in the north.”

House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

REA Group chief economist Nerida Conisbee.Source:Supplied

Ms Conisbee said it was interesting to see demand for apartments in inner Brisbane was up 10 per cent, given the concerns around oversupply.

“I think people are looking potentially for bargains and perhaps seeing opportunity in the market,” she said.

“We’re also seeing a strong pick-up in overseas interest in Brisbane apartments, so I think a lot of the commentary around discounting is starting to rev up interest.”

Outside of Brisbane, demand for houses in Ipswich rose more than 14 per cent in the past year, while interest in units was also strong with a 7.7 per cent increase.

House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

An heritage home in Ipswich, where demand for houses has jumped.Source:News Limited

“We’re seeing quite a bit of upswing in Ipswich,” Ms Conisbee said.

“It’s still possible to get something under $300,000, so I think the fact pricing is so good is attracting a lot of interest.”

Househunters are also flocking to Toowoomba, which reported a 12.1 per cent increase in demand for houses in the past year.

But demand for both houses and units has dropped on the Gold Coast, which Ms Conisbee attributed to a post Commonwealth Games lull and a drop-off in investor demand.

House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

The Gold Coast has seen a drop-off in housing demand. Photo: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images.Source:Getty Images

Real Estate Institute of Australia president Malcolm Gunning said vendors looking to sell in areas where demand had dropped would need to have more realistic price expectations.

“This is a classic time in a changing market where vendor expectation is very different to buyer expectation,” Mr Gunning said.

“Six months ago, buyers were often prepared to pay more than what sellers had as an asking price. Now, we have a more conservative purchaser.”

House hunters ditch Brisbane’s north for east side

Real Estate Institute of Australia president Malcolm Gunning.Source:News Corp Australia

The data comes as Brisbane continues to defy a softening in home values, despite falls in the larger capital cities, the latest figures from property researcher CoreLogic reveal.

The official end-of-month results are released today, but for the first 29 days of May, Brisbane home values rose 0.1 per cent.

Year-to-date, they are holding steady.

The month-to-date index shows Melbourne values are down half a per cent, while the Sydney market is down 0.2 per cent so far this month.

CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless said Brisbane was outperforming the larger capital cities because its home values were not falling, even though they were not growing much.

“Brisbane on paper is looking like a very good market,” Mr Lawless said.

“It’s affordable, has high yields and is seeing strong population growth. It just hasn’t seen a kickstart in property values.”


Brisbane — East 22.1%

Brisbane — North -1.9%

Brisbane — South 4.1%

Brisbane — West 3%

Brisbane Inner City 11%

Gold Coast -0.1%

Ipswich 14.6%

Logan — Beaudesert -3.4%

Moreton Bay — North 2%

Moreton Bay — South 7.3%

Toowoomba 12.1%

(Source:, based on property views per listing between April 30, 2017 and April 30, 2018)


Brisbane — East 1.7%

Brisbane — North 7.3%

Brisbane — South 3.4%

Brisbane — West 4.1%

Brisbane Inner City 10%

Gold Coast -8.2%

Ipswich 7.7%

Logan — Beaudesert -13%

Moreton Bay — North 6.2%

Moreton Bay — South 12.2%

Toowoomba -10.8%

(Source:, based on property views per listing between April 30, 2017 and April 30, 2018)


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Couple turns $145k into $7.5m



Couple turns $145k into $7.5m

The massive 1.97Ha site of their family home sits in the middle of Wakerley, about 16km to the east of the Brisbane CBD – a popular area with families that’s been targeted for major subdivision work.

Property records released last week show a $7.5m deal was struck off market in late March, while just two years ago, the site was valued around $1.1m. It’s believed the property was bought for $145,000 in 1987.

Preparation for the development approval began last year, with the couple then selling to a firm that then filed a development application to split the site into 27 housing lots in the first stage and five lots in the second stage.

Couple turns $145k into $7.5m
The new subdivision is expected to connect other streets in the area surrounding it. Picture: CoreLogic

The large “rural” home site was surrounded by residential subdivisions on three sides and fronts Manly Road – one of the main feeder streets to the area. The new plans mean it will join seamless into the other subdivisions in the area.

The company that bought the site received development approval from the Brisbane City Council in May and waived the appeal period.

Couple turns $145k into $7.5m
114 Virginia Ave, Hawthorne, QLD.

The previous highest price fetched in Brisbane’s east was at 114 Virginia Avenue, Hawthorne – an ultra-modern six bedroom, five bathroom, six car space home that sold for $7.48m in six years ago.

Built in 2008, the Viriginia Avenue home has solid concrete walls and floors over all levels, with full walls of glass fronting the river.

114 Virginia Ave, Hawthorne, QLD.


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Market Place

Metro Property’s discounts leftover Brisbane apartments



Metro Property's discounts leftover Brisbane apartments

Want a bargain? Metro’s Newstead Towers in Brisbane has 20 per cent discounts. Supplied

Real estate agents are offering 20 per cent discounts on apartment sales at four of Brisbane-based developer Metro Property Development’s Brisbane CBD projects as the apartment market continues to face headwinds.

Along with 20 per cent discounts on one and two-bedroom apartments, buyers were being offered a 4.5 per cent rental one-year guarantee at Aqua Newstead, Broadway on Ann, Canterbury Towers, and Newstead Towers. These apply to apartments priced between low $400,000 to nearly $600,000.

The oversupply problem in Brisbane is heating up, with the Queensland Treasury now warning its apartment market could take a turn for the worse, especially if the bigger Sydney and Melbourne markets begin to falter.

But Metro said the discounts applied only to residual stock, not entire projects or launch prices, with residual discounting being part of a business-as-usual stock clearance.

“We are not discounting [the original prices of] apartments in Brisbane, but rather managing an orderly sell down of any remaining stock we have,” Metro marketing and sales general manager Phil Leahy said.

“The heat has certainly come out of the Brisbane market from where it was a couple of years ago, but we see it as just back to normal market conditions with good buying opportunities and plenty of growth potential in the coming years to buyers entering the market now.

“We have already secured buyers for the four buildings and are in the run up to settling the last of these units over the next couple of months.”

He said discounts were sometimes offered by agents on their own accord, hoping developers would accept the lower prices.

“We see this all the time, however I can confirm there is no discounting to our [original] price lists and we have been successful in maintaining pricing levels thanks to the locations, amenity, inclusions and designs offered in the apartment projects we have been selling,” Mr Leahy said.

Discounts aside, a 4.5 per cent rental guarantee was reasonable and agrees with SQM Research’s data which show the latest rental yield for two-bedroom units in Brisbane was close to 5 per cent.

“We are taking an average of 18 days from handover to secure a tenant via our in-house rental team. Given this strong demand, we do offer a one-year rent guarantee to investors,” Mr Leahy added.

“We are having excellent success getting investors from both Melbourne and Sydney to look at Brisbane as a more affordable investment option than the other wo capitals vis-à-vis lower purchase prices with high rental yields.”


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Market Place

Analysis: Brisbane’s backyards emerge victorious over townhouses but for how long?



Analysis: Brisbane’s backyards emerge victorious over townhouses but for how long?

Three years ago, Madonna King wrote that Brisbane was “at risk of becoming downright ugly”.

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