Affordable suburbs star performers

"The figures don’t lie. They show that affordable suburbs are not only becoming increasingly attractive to first home buyers, but also to investors because of the possibility of excellent capital growth," REIQ chairman Peter McGrath said.

"You can see where investors are looking by tracking the very healthy price growth of these areas over the past year. With these levels of growth and the more affordable price tags it makes sense to invest in these types of suburbs.

"The current interest rate environment is making it even more difficult for first home buyers to enter the market, but these figures show that across the state there are still affordable options available.

"Sure, their first home might not be in the suburb that many of them may have dreamed they would live in, but to get a foothold in real estate, everyone has to start somewhere."

Mr McGrath said in the 12 months to the end of September, the three most affordable suburbs in 11 of the 13 major regional centres – including Brisbane – all had medians under $300,000.

"At this sort of price, rental properties in these areas are likely to be good investments over the long term," he said.

In the 12 months to the end of September, the most affordable suburbs in Brisbane are Carole Park, up 20 per cent to $195,000; Inala, up 16.3 per cent to $230,000; and Darra, which increased 17.7 per cent to $282,500.

In Greater Brisbane, the top three are Dinmore in Ipswich at $192,000; Russell Island in Redland, up 19.4 per cent to $197,000; and Lamb Island at $206,500.

The most affordable suburbs on the Gold Coast all recorded very healthy price growth over the year and are Eagleby, up 19 per cent to $250,000; Bethania, up 21.2 per cent to $275,000; and Beenleigh, up 17.4 per cent to $284,175.

Caboolture’s most affordable suburbs also performed very well with Caboolture South recording a 17.7 per cent increase to $242,500; Caboolture, up 16.7 per cent to $265,000; and Ningi also at $265,000.
Toowoomba – one of the most affordable areas of Queensland – enjoyed modest growth with Harlaxton, up 3.5 per cent to $207,000; North Toowoomba, up 5 per cent to $210,000; and Wilsonton Heights, up 1 per cent to $211,000.

The most affordable suburb on the Sunshine Coast is Cooran in the Noosa shire with a median house price of $280,000; Nambour in Maroochy recorded a 15 per cent increase in its median to $313,500; and Pomona, also in Noosa, up 1.3 per cent to $315,000.

Mr McGrath said the Hervey Bay/Maryborough region still has some of the most affordable real estate in Queensland, but with the area’s growing popularity this might not last much longer.

Aldershot came in as the most affordable suburb in the region with a median house price of $188,500, up 9.6 per cent in the 12 months to the end of September; Howard was next, up 19 per cent to $210,000; and third was Granville, up 11 per cent to $217,000.

Bundaberg’s affordable suburbs are some of the star performers of the past year, Mr McGrath said. Walkerville recorded a 20.8 per cent increase to $215,000; Norville was next with 19.5 per cent median house price growth to $221,000; and Bundaberg South was third, up 18.9 per cent to $226,000.

The Gladstone region performed exceptionally well over the 12 months to the end of September with its affordable suburbs being no exception. Barney Point recorded a 39.9 per cent increase in its median house price to $271,050; Toolooa is up 46.7 per cent to $271,414; and South Gladstone is up 30.7 per cent to $287,500.

The most affordable suburb in the Mackay region is Mackay at $332,000; next is North Mackay, up 14.8 per cent to $333,000; and third is Slade Point, up 6.1 per cent to $337,500.

The Rockhampton region experienced very strong median house, and unit and townhouse, price growth in the 12 months to the end of September. Its most affordable suburbs are now Depot Hill, up 37.5 per cent to $185,000; Rockhampton City, up 44.7 per cent to $217,000; and Berserker, up 35.1 per cent to $250,000.

Similarly, while the Townsville/Thuringowa region also recorded healthy price growth over the year, there are still options available for under $300,000. Balgal Beach is up 16 per cent to $264,000; Rasmussen was next, up 20.3 per cent to $276,750; and third was Vincent, up 22.7 per cent to $278,500.

Mr McGrath said rounding out the state is Cairns which has been a steady performer throughout the year. Babinda is its most affordable suburb, up 6 per cent to $181,750; White Rock is up 13 per cent to $265,500; and Gordonvale is up 19.2 per cent to $285,000.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.

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