Gold Coast unit prices slowing but bucking downward trends as Australia’s property market eases

Several multi-million-dollar homes for sale on the Gold Coast are propping up the city’s hot housing market, despite a nationwide downturn.
A $22 million unit in Burleigh Heads was listed as under offer this week, and others up to $25 million are on the market.
New CoreLogic data revealed units on the Gold Coast were among the most expensive in the state at a median price of $672,021.
According to the latest census data, 41.4 per cent of Gold Coasters live in an apartment or townhouse.
Property analyst Terry Ryder said despite a slight slowing of the market it was unlikely the city’s apartment prices would fall “to any great degree”.
“The Gold Coast has managed to still produce a property boom during difficult times,” he said.
“I think we are going to have ongoing demand on the Gold Coast and ongoing population growth.

“The Gold Coast is going to be one of those markets that’s still going to continue to produce price growth, but I think the level of growth is going to be less than it was in the last two years.”

$22m luxury apartment ‘bargain’
The Burleigh Heads penthouse is proposed be built at the controversial heritage Old Burleigh Theatre Arcade.
A group of residents have lodged an appeal in the Queensland Planning and Environment Court against the developer and Gold Coast City Council.
They have argued the development application should be refused for reasons including the heritage significance of Old Burleigh Theatre Arcade, the size of the development and lack of landscaping and issues with pedestrian and vehicle movement.
Court documents show they argue the development is “inconsistent with the reasonable community expectations of the land”.
The matter remains before the court and a hearing has been adjourned.
If the development goes ahead, sales and marketing director for Weiya Holdings, Patrick Pancur, said the Burleigh penthouse would be the most expensive off-the-plan unit sale in Queensland’s history.
He said people moving from Sydney and Melbourne might consider a multi-million-dollar home a good deal.
The $22 million penthouse had immediate interest, according to Patrick Pancur.(Supplied: Conrad Gargett)
“[A] property, for example, on Sovereign Islands of $20 million anywhere within Sydney could be a $60 million-plus property,” he said.

“So I actually see it as being a bargain when you look at the type of property.”

Property analyst Terry Ryder said more people were looking for lifestyle moves and said apartments could offer a cheaper lifestyle investment.
“Houses in many parts of the country and the Gold Coast have become prohibitively expensive for some people,” he said.
He said the Gold Coast market had been “much stronger than expected” over the past two years but suggested it was slowing down.
“We are seeing some of the heat dissipating from the market,” he said.
Unit prices falling but steady
The median price of a Gold Coast house was $1.1 million, almost double the state median.
CoreLogic research analyst Kaytlin Ezzy said unit prices were dominating but the rate of growth had dropped since November.
“Unit growth over the past few months has been quite a lot stronger than in the housing segment,” she said.

“The pace of growth is starting to slow across the unit segment, but not as rapidly as the house segment.”

She said units tended to have a less volatile rise and fall in value.
CoreLogic data reveals the median price of Gold Coast units are $130,000 more than the rest of Queensland.(ABC Gold Coast: Dominic Cansdale)
Mr Ryder argued the coast’s construction industry had historically been subject to volatility, and current supply chain issues and costs were affecting development.
He said apartments had generally not performed as well on capital growth as houses in the past.
“The Gold Coast tends to have bouts of oversupply,” he said.
“When the Gold Coast builds new apartments they’re usually mega-towers.

“Quite often the market gets the balance wrong, and we’ve seen apartment values fall during those periods of oversupply which can sometimes take two or three years for the market to absorb.”

Interest rates no deterrent
Real estate agent Jake Albertson from Mcgrath estimated property prices in some hinterland suburbs had already dropped approximately 8 per cent since the beginning of 2022.
“[The market] has certainly cooled off,” he said.
“One property in Bonogin sold in December for $1.43 million, and then a similar property just sold for $1.24 million — very similar streets and characteristics and everything.

“We’re still thinking it’ll cool off a little further again for the rest of the year.”

A recent interest rate hike is putting more pressure on people being able to afford their mortgages.
Real estate agent Dan Donovan from Ray White Burleigh said recent rate rises meant first home buyers were tightening their budgets.
“A buyer probably looking at spending $700,000 … might [now] be looking to spend, say, $600,000,” Mr Donovan said.

“For us, our auction clearance rates, they’ve still been relatively good.”

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