The arrival of the traditional spring selling season is expected to result in a slight surge of activity for the Port Macquarie property market, following a few softer years, according to PRDnationwide research.
PRDnationwide Research Analyst, Oded Reuveni-Etzioni, said that like most of New South Wales and Australia, Port Macquarie has suffered softer market conditions following the Global Financial Crisis from the end of 2009 and extending into the second half of 2011.
"This is really the first sign of the reprieve that the market has shown since government stimulus and lower interest rates encouraged buyers to purchase in 2009," Mr Reuveni-Etzioni said.
"An increase of properties on the market has resulted in a slight increase in sales activity, but prices and activity are expected to only marginally benefit from a low interest rate environment, as only one quarter (25.9 per cent) of dwellings here are owned with a mortgage."
However, according to Mr Reuveni-Etzioni, the overall outlook for the Port Macquarie market remains positive, with an increase in rent returns expected to stimulate investor activity.
"The rental market has recorded a 31 per cent increase in the median rent price for units and houses over the past five years," he said
"In June 2012 a two bedroom unit recorded a median rent of $250 per week, while a three bedroom house closed at a median weekly rent of $360. The median unit rent climbed 8.7 per cent in the year to June, while the median rent for a house remained unchanged."
Contributing to the significant increase in the median rent, according to Mr Reuveni-Etzioni, is the tight vacancy rate of 1.5 per cent in September, making it one of the tightest rental markets in coastal New South Wales.
Principal of PRDnationwide Port Macquarie, Tony Dekker, said that while owner-buyers were currently a little thin on the ground, enquiry from investors had increased slightly, particularly from those interested in holiday apartments, pending on returns.
"I would say that the current low interest rates and a belief that the market has now bottomed out have contributed to this increased activity," he said.