Brisbane's time to shine

KevinYoung- 70x60The Brisbane property market is coming into its own, as results from the September quarter illustrate a positive momentum and signify a steady price growth over the next few years.

lachlan walker

Blogger: Lachlan Walker, Place Advisory

The Brisbane median apartment price still remains significantly cheaper than both Sydney (41 per cent) and Melbourne (25 per cent) and this affordability when compared to our Southern neighbours has been the primary reason for the augmented interstate interest our city has received over the past 12 months.

September quarter overview
Although the three months to September did not see the inner Brisbane market match the colossal sales levels recorded in the June 2014 quarter, the results have laid the groundwork for what is expected to be another massive quarter of sales for the upcoming December period. In spite of this, the September quarter still saw a total of 785 unconditional off the plan sales across 56 Inner Brisbane projects, totalling at $428 million, a figure well above the ten year average of 343 sales per quarter. Brisbane remains point sensitive with little price change occurring during this period. The unconditional sale price also remained steady, with a weighted average of $545,478, a figure that was just 1% below the results seen in the June quarter. 5 new projects totalling 727 apartments were launched to market during the 2014 September quarter, the majority being one and two bedroom configurations with few three beds available for sale. Sales rates have continued to outperform new product, keeping apartment supply low. At the end of September 2014, a total of 1,638 apartments remain for sale in Inner Brisbane, translating to a market supply of just 6.2 months.

The Brisbane CBD recorded very little sales activity during the 2014 September quarter, with just 4 unconditional sales recorded. This market was the most limited by available supply, with almost all unconditional sales attributed to Sunland’s Abian Apartments. This explains the higher than average sale price of $1.57 million. 75% of the quarterly sales were 3 bedroom transactions and 25% were 2 bedders’, emphasising a demand for larger product. Just 87 developer apartments remain for sale in the Brisbane CBD. Although the Brisbane CBD results for the September quarter were disappointing, we are expecting a very different story following the results from the December 2014 quarter, due to the release and re-release of new and established projects.

North of the River
The September 2014 quarter saw the North of the River back on track, recording 637 unconditional sales- by far the majority of sales for the period, at 81%. Projects sold extremely well in this precinct in the three months to September; the Inner North contained the quarter’s top performing project; The Yards by Lend Lease, which registered 162 unconditional sales. Other projects North of the River including Newstead Towers and Zest also recorded high transactions with 112 sales and 68 sales respectively. The weighted sale price for this precinct of $535,675 was stable, a figure just under $3000 less than the three months to June. This has been relatively unchanged for two years and is reflective of the consistent and unwavering supply entering the region. Currently, 1,018 apartments remain for sale in the Inner North, which is the most of any precinct, translating to a supply of 4.8 months.

South of the River
Sales have returned to long term averages for the Inner South during the September quarter. Following an anomaly seen in the June 2014 three month period, which was one of the biggest quarters ever recorded for the precinct, the September 2014 period saw a significant tightening in the number of unconditional sales recorded for this area. Limited by new levels of supply, just 144 unconditional sales transacted across this precinct during the most recent quarter. 22 projects are currently being actively sold in the Inner South precinct, with an average weighted sale price of $560,243, a figure higher than that of the June quarter. Similar to recent previous quarters, this weighted average sale price reflects the continued sale of investor stock within the Brisbane market. In the period ending September 2014, 529 apartments remain for sale in the South of the River precinct, which represents a supply of 11 months for the region.

What’s next for the Inner Brisbane market?
At the end of September 2014, approximately 20,163 apartments are planned or proposed for development in Inner Brisbane; an 18% increase from the previous quarter. The majority of development applications in the pipeline are for the Inner South West, which represents 41% of proposed apartments in the Inner Brisbane market, and proclaims big things to come for this area. Up to 14 new projects, spanning 2200 apartments are expected to record unconditional sales for the first time during the December 2014 quarter. Research suggests that interest is strong and most should record strong unconditional sales. For this reason, Place Advisory believes that the closing chapter of 2014 could be the largest quarter historically to date for the River City.

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