Sunday, February 5, 2017

Western Suburbs Brisbane Apartments

A real estate agent has issued a interesting report regarding sales of houses and apartments in the Western suburbs of Brisbane (Indooroopilly, Taringa, Toowong, St Lucia.)  The report is available here.

According to this report, the 2016 market was worse than in 2013, 2014 and 2015, based on number of sales and also on total sales prices.

For example, in Indooroopilly, in 2015 a total of $130M in apartments were sold.  In 2016, this dropped to $60M.  In Toowong, $117M in 2015, dropped to $82M in 2016.

It seems that 2016 was a good time to buy but not a good time to sell?

The report lists the top 10 apartment sales in each suburb.  With a number of new buildings reaching completion in 2017, I suspect that the top sales in 2017 will be concentrated in a few of these new buildings.  For example, Aspect Property Group's Centra in Toowong has a number of apartments above $900,000 that settled in January 2017.  All of these sales will be higher than the top Toowong apartment sale for 2016, which was $862,500.

When looking a new buildings, keep in mind this report --  you may be paying top dollar!

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Valuer says Brisbane will get worse

Independent property valuers Herron Todd White say that the Brisbane apartment market is about to enter a decline.  It looks like values will go down.  We have not had a boom in Brisbane since 2007.  Who said property prices double every ten years?  If you bought in 2007, you may still be underwater!

The report says:
"Brisbane property has been a heartbreaker over the past few years, offering so much promise, but failing to live up to the hype – and anyone hoping 2017 would prove to be “The Year of the Brissie” will probably be disappointed again.

The hoodoo continues to be employment-fuelled interstate migration and, truth be told, we can’t see anything on the economic horizon to suggest southern buyers will start heading here in droves.
That’s not to say we should be ignored - on the contrary, Brisbane is one of the country’s most forgiving capital city markets. There are very few disappointed long-term buyers in our sunshine- state’s big city, provided they stuck with the fundamentals and bought the right property in the right position at the right price. With this historic performance as a foundation, there are opportunities to get into Brisbane and hold tight that will leave you feeling very satis ed with your decision come a market cycle or two.

Herron Todd White Brisbane has always been keen on well located second hand units as a strategy for those trying to get a foot on the market. They usually offer an affordable option in a great location, and while capital gains aren’t always mind blowing, good tenant demand ensures you can continue to service the mortgage without too much stress. There is, however, a very real oversupply risk looming for investor units in our city as new stock struggles to find demand. This is having a negative flow on to our traditionally solid second-hand unit market. If you buy investor-grade unit stock in particular – new or old – please tread with caution in 2017."

Friday, February 3, 2017

Student "Apartments"

There is a social media advertising campaign underway for Atira Student Living in South Brisbane.  The rooms are extremely small:
  • 16 sqm for a studio
  • 21 sqm for a twin studio
  • 33 sqm for a 2 bedroom apartment
  • 55 sqm for a 3 bedroom apartment.
A typical apartment bedroom (4m x 3m) is 12 sqm.  A typical hotel room is about 33 sqm.  A small two bedroom apartment in a low quality complex is about 75 sqm.   There are many two bedroom apartments in Brisbane that are 110 sqm and larger.  These Atria rooms are small.  And they are charging more than $460 per week for a studio.  (A furnished one bedroom that is 72 sqm in a good location is about $550.)

Students are best advised to look at regular apartments on and compare against student apartments before renting.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Brisbane Still Going Backwards

According to RP Data CoreLogic, Brisbane apartments did badly in 2016.  See report here.
Brisbane apartment prices (to 31 January 2017):
January 2017 - down 0.1%
Quarter - up 0.2%
Year on Year - down 2.7% 
Median price based on settled sales of Brisbane apartments over the quarter - $380,000

The report says:
Mr Lawless cites the large number of high-rise units currently under construction as another factor that may slow overall housing market performance. He said, “Dwelling approvals have already peaked across the high rise sector, as have construction commencements. However, the unit supply pipeline remains at unprecedented levels with a large proportion of these high rise units located within the inner city regions.”
“As these units flow through to settlement, the risk of buyers receiving a finance shock is becoming heightened.”
”Metadata flowing across CoreLogic valuation platforms is showing more than 40% of off-the-plan settlement valuations are coming in under contract price across the Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth unit sectors. While the large majority of these ‘under valuations’ are not showing a significant gap between the contract price and settlement valuation, more significant differences can be seen in some projects and precincts. Buyers who receive a valuation lower than the original contract price will generally require a larger than expected deposit in order to meet the loan to valuation ratio required by the lender.” 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Solicitor Assaults Neighbour - Then Sells House

Last year, it was reported that controversial Brisbane solicitor, Robert Hynes, assaulted his neighbour, who happens to be a barrister.  The Hynes family house is now for sale.  The house, in 18 Ormond Street, in Ascot, Brisbane, is in Hynes' wife's name.  She purchased the house in 2009 for $2M.  Hynes Lawyers went through a restructure in 2013, and not everyone was happy.  Restructured and now Hynes Legal, this firm is well known for its aggressive body corporate and management rights practice.

The advertorial in the AFR and The Domain, without some of this detail, is below.