State of Markets – NSW December 2011

By Phillip Tarrant

Essential information, plus expert insight on what is shaping the national property market...


Fast Figures

  • $560,000 – Sydney median house price
  • 54 – Median days on market for Sydney houses

Foreign investors eyeing NSW land
Foreign investors have warmed to purchasing distressed agricultural assets in New South Wales, new research shows.

PRDnationwide data show the UK is the largest offshore investor in primary production land, with ownership totalling 613,000 hectares.

China is the biggest spender, with more than $189 million invested in land purchases in mining regions and a smaller share in vineyards.

The top owner of NSW land in dollar terms is Shenhua Watermark, with total funds exceeding $158 million, PRDnationwide’s NSW research manager, Oded Reuveni Etzioni, said.

“The Chinese coal miner owns approximately 33,000 hectares in the Gunnedah region, with arable land purchased over the past two years accounting for a large portion of it,” he said.

“Foreign companies are investing not only for the monetary benefits but also to secure scarce resources,” he added.

UK-based John Swire & Sons is the largest foreign NSW land owner in NSW, accounting for 92 per cent of total UK holdings.

Hunter region a good investment
Property experts have flagged the NSW Hunter region as a prime investment area.

The Hunter suffers from a housing shortage and the lack of rental properties is both putting pressure on real estate agents and creating a rental war.

The region has seen a surge in population in recent years on the back of the resources boom and a $1.7 billion investment in infrastructure, creating hundreds of jobs both for local and new residents.

“Everything about this region seems to be moving forward,” founder Terry Ryder said. “Its population has recorded the largest increases of any NSW region outside Sydney in recent years.

“Towns such as Muswellbrook, MaitlandMaitland, SA Maitland, NSW and Singleton have strong property markets at a time when many city markets are flat because of the strength of economic activity in the Hunter region.”

Research house BIS Shrapnel expects median house prices to rise by 18 per cent by 2014.

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State of Markets – NSW December 2011
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