Financial Review - Nine for Brands

Queensland  Prestige  Property Rising One Day, Booming the Next


Financial Review - Michael Bleby,

Senior Reporter. Dec 31, 2020 - 11:44am

The pandemic-driven boost to Brisbane's prestige property market that prompted locals to upgrade and interstate buyers to coming looking for cheaper, larger homes is likely to continue. Queensland's state final demand – a key measure of economic growth – jumped a nationally leading 6.8 percent in the September quarter, equal fastest with NSW, and Brisbane was the only east coast capital where net interstate migration rose in the June quarter, the latest figures show.

The drivers that were pushing demand for the city's prestige and river-front homes were likely to continue, agent Jason Adcock said. "We’re looking at a 2-3 year run, particularly in the high end of town," Mr Adcock said on Thursday. "That is being driven by a huge amount of locals upgrading – they can’t go overseas anymore – so they’re thinking if they’re going to spend more time at home they want a nicer home."

The $7.3 million sale in October – $1 million over reserve – at auction of a five bedroom, three-level riverfront home in Toowong to a local buyer summed up a 2020 market that was Mr Adcock's best in 26 years of real estate and which was all concentrated in the last six months of the year. "It’s making the locals pay more money for their properties," he said. "And they’re probably not happy about that, but that’s just the way it is."

Over the next 12 months, prices of prestige properties – which Mr Adcock said started at about the $2 million mark – were likely to rise a "healthy"  8-9 percent, he said. An hour's drive south-east in Gold Coast, the luxury market is also likely to be pushed higher by competition from cooped-up buyers from Melbourne and Sydney who can no longer travel overseas will increase the competition for luxury property in Gold Coast in 2021.

"Escapees from Toorak" in Melbourne pushed up the price for one of the six penthouses occupying over 300sqm each in the Palazzo Versace residential building at Gold Coast's Main Beach during the year, agent Duncan Longmore said. "We... sold the ground-floor penthouse in Versace for $6.42 million, which is $1 million more than any of the other penthouses in the complex," Mr Longmore said. Stock levels that were as low as they were in the Gold Coast's heady pre-GFC days were likely to keep prices and activity strong, with the biggest constraint being vendors' fear of selling and then being unable to buy back into the market, Mr Longmore said. "Stock that was hard to move prior was going, but another thing with sellers – when you’re taking an outlandish offer to them on off market, they’re saying ‘What do I replace it with?’" he said.

"It’s all well being offered a [price with as many digits as a] telephone number, but if you can’t replace it with something else… what are you going to do with the money? Bank interest rates are so low." In the boutique market of Noosa, where businesswoman Therese Rein in May paid
$17 million for a seven bedroom home for herself and her husband, former prime minister Kevin Rudd,in May, prices jumped about 30 per cent in the final three months of the year, agent Karen Harman said. "The demand has not stopped since mid-year," Noosa agent Karen Harman said.
"It's gathering momentum and is not stopping. Our property is still going to have growth. I’m not sure it'll be at the same breakneck speed we’ve had."