Tasmania remains in a slump, though the market is showing some signs of life.
With a median sales price of $345,000, Hobart may be Australia’s cheapest capital city to buy in. An HIA-CBA Housing Affordability survey indicates the Hobart is becoming ever more affordable, with an 8.3 per cent bump in affordability over the past year.
Despite the low buy-in and a generous government grant, first home buyer numbers are dwindling across Tasmania. REIT president Adrian Kelly says first-timers account for only 17 per cent of buyers across the state. He warns the problem is likely to be exacerbated once the grant is removed in July.
Investors remain a significant part of the Tasmanian market, making up 16 per cent of house sales, according to the REIT. Hobart tends to be Tasmania’s most active market, attracting the most interest from mainland buyers. REIT figures show sales activity is up 10 per cent over the year, with the central suburbs in particular attracting a flurry of interest.
Across the whole island, sales activity seems to be rising. According Mr Kelly, house sales rose by 14.9 per cent compared with the previous year.
In Launceston, sales volumes are up 2.51 per cent over last year. However, the town saw a decline over the past quarter, with results dropping by 25.1 per cent in these three months, the REIT reports.
Across the state, ten municipalities saw both their median price and sales volumes increase over the March quarter, with Clarence, Hobart and Kingborough the stand-out performers, according to the REIT.,
Herron Todd White says the island offers a unique opportunity for investors to take advantage of low prices, a steady rental market and strong government incentives.
According to the valuation company, the best results in Hobart are found in the inner-city, where property held its value most consistently. North and West Hobart were highlighted as particularly desirable locations for investors. In Launceston, meanwhile, Invermay and West Launceston were the best bets for long-term returns.
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