After years of struggling to get off the ground, there are signs that rising demand and increasing prices are setting the Gold Coast on the road to recovery.
According to Dr Andrew Wilson from Australian Property Monitors, the entire south east Queensland market has begun healing.
“We’re starting to see an improvement in activity on the Gold Coast. This is in line with what we’re seeing in the entire south east Queensland market, as well as most of the larger capital city markets,” he told Smart Property Investment.
“Our latest figures show that median prices on the Gold Coast were up by 1.3 per cent over the March quarter and up 3.6 per cent over the year, so there’s certainly a better story there for the market.
“We’ve now had three consecutive quarters of price growth on the Gold Coast, so signs are pointing to a much more positive environment.”
Bill Morris, managing director of PRODAP – a property market research firm based on the Gold Coast – believes the local economy was volatile from the start.
“During the GFC [global financial crisis], the Gold Coast was probably hit harder than a lot of other places because of the narrow economy based on tourism and construction, which has been hit by general downturn in bank lending for development,” he said.
Data from SQM Research shows that while the residential vacancy rate is relatively high, sitting at 5.4 per cent as of May, historically the market peaks during June and significantly tightens throughout the rest of the year until January.
Paul Merritt, Colliers International residential associate director has also notices increasing demand for developments in the area.
“The sales success reflects the improvements in the residential market in general, as well as the improved interest we’ve seen in the Gold Coast market particularly,” he said.
He claims a residential estate in the Gold Coast northern corridor has racked up around $2 million in land sales so far this year.
“After a few slow years, the Gold Coast real estate market is now starting to move. There is a lot more confidence in the region now due to a variety of factors, not least of which is the upcoming Commonwealth Games, to be held on the Gold Coast in 2018,” he said.
According to figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the Gold Coast’s northern corridor is the fastest growing area in terms of population growth, and Coomera is the focus of much of that growth.
The Pimpama-Coomera area recorded 14.1 per cent growth per year over the five years to June 2011, while the Kingsholme-Upper Coomera area recorded 10.6 per cent growth per year over the same period. These were the two highest population growth areas on the Gold Coast.