Surfers Paradise unit sales reach new heights

Surfers Paradise has cemented its position as Queensland’s high-rise capital, with more than double the number of apartments sold in the Glitter Strip location than anywhere else in the state.

InfoTrack’s latest market update shows Surfers Paradise recorded a 62 per cent increase in unit sales from the month of April to May, despite rising prices.

InfoTrack head of property Lee Bailie said the Gold Coast’s tourist mecca not only held its title, but proved more popular than ever, with the number of units sold there far surpassing next-ranked West End in Brisbane.

A two-level unit in the Mykonos building in Surfers Paradise went for $2.65m.

“Surfers Paradise’s popularity is growing, with the total number of sales at Surfers increasing seven per cent from the last quarter,” he said.

“That increase in sales is despite the fact Surfers prices are increasing.”

Mr Bailie said Surfers Paradise claimed 25 per cent of Queensland’s share of unit sales, trailed by West End, Brisbane City, Broadbeach, Southport and Varsity Lakes, which each had about 9 per cent of the total sales.

He said Brisbane suburbs gave the Gold Coast “a run for its money”, as investors sought to capitalise ahead of the 2032 Olympic Games to be hosted by the river city.

Compared with the previous quarter, the figures showed a 7 per cent lift in unit sales priced between $500,000 and $1m, accounting for 52 per cent of all unit sales in Surfers Paradise, and a 9 per cent drop in those priced under $500,000.

West End recorded the highest number of unit sales in Brisbane last quarter. This Bailey St apartment sold for $3.125m.

The data also showed a 5 per cent uplift in apartments priced from $1m-$1.5m.

Palm Beach also made the top 10 list, along with South Brisbane, Fortitude Valley and Coorparoo.

InfoTrack was unable to supply the exact number of units sold due to the way its data was collected, however property records show 290 apartments changed hands in Q2 2023 in Surfers Paradise.

Property records show the most expensive unit sale in Surfers Paradise over the quarter was a two-level beachfront penthouse in the ageing Madison Point building, which was snapped up for $4.9m in May.

The sky home in the 16-storey residential tower sold under the hammer following a marketing campaign with Kollosche agents, Sam Guo and Julia Kuo, with property features including an internal glass lift, private pool and marina berth.

Mr Bailie said the number of sales of both houses and units across Queensland rebounded towards the end of the quarter after dipping in April, recording a lift of 10 per cent over the three-month period.

The unit market’s strong performance comes as new data from Finder shows buyers priced out of owning a freestanding house in more locations, with a household income of $200,000 required to buy into family-friendly suburbs on the Gold Coast including Mudgeeraba and Carrara.

PropTrack’s latest Market Trends report shows the median weekly household income is $1861, or about $96,720 a year.

Finder’s head of consumer research Graham Cooke said interest rate rises had pushed property ownership further out of reach.

“Every time the cash rate goes up, the first rung of the property ladder gets higher,” he said. “We’ve now had 12 increases. The deposit you need hasn’t gone up too much, but the number of suburbs where you need to earn more than $500,000 a year is alarming.

“Ideally you don’t want to spend more than 30 per cent of your salary on home loan repayments, and it’s good to give yourself a buffer.”

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