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Darwin becoming 'buyer's market'

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A surge of new stock in Darwin is putting vendors at a disadvantage, a local real estate agent has warned.

Glenn Grantham, general manager of Raine&Horne Darwin, said home values have been flat in recent times.

“Homeowners and investors have enjoyed a number of very good years. However, values have steadied, which is giving buyers more chance to secure a well-priced, well-located home in Darwin,” he said.

According to Residex, Darwin house prices rose by just 1.3 per cent over the year to May, while unit prices rose by 2.5 per cent.

He believes a new apartment complex, comprising 200-300 units, may be creating an oversupply in the urban market.

“It's significant when you consider that in any single month, we probably only sell between 250 and 300 properties in the Darwin CBD, the Darwin suburbs and Palmerston combined,” he said.

“The settlement of off-the-plan apartments has taken a fair whack of investors out of the market.”

While Mr Grantham said median prices had not yet fallen, vendors may find it difficult to secure a contract.

“Therefore, the message to vendors is there are not multiple buyers, so be sensible about your pricing and listen to the market – with the help of your agent," he said.

“And if you get a buyer for your property, make sure you hold on to them because it might take a bit more time to find another one.”

He also warned that changes to the first home buyer grant, limiting its eligibility to newly constructed properties, may steer first-time buyers out of Darwin to outer areas.

"This change to the scheme is undoubtedly aimed at getting more new buyers to consider the brand new Palmerston suburbs such as Durack Heights, Johnston, Zuccoli and Bellamack," he said.

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