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Metropolitan slump creeps into regional markets

While regional markets have not felt the full brunt of Australia’s housing slump, they were not immune to declines in sales activity, a new CoreLogic report has concluded.

According to the latest CoreLogic Regional Report, home value growth in regional markets across NSW, Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia had slowed down over the year to February 2019.

“The regional markets are taking their lead from the capital cities, with the annual rate of value growth winding down across most regions,” CoreLogic research analyst Cameron Kusher said.

In regional NSW, Illawarra experienced the steepest decline in sales activity (4,537) over the year, at -20 per cent for houses and -22 per cent for units, respectively. House values were down 10.1 per cent to a median of $648,000 and units by 2.7 per cent to $531,000, when compared to figures from a year ago.  

The average time to sell a home also went up significantly in Illawarra, by 22 days to 73 for houses, and by 30 days to 77 for units.

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House and unit prices took a sharp downward turn in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie region in NSW, where house prices fell by 7.5 per cent year on year to a median of $545,000 and unit prices by 9.4 per cent to $466,000, while sales activity (6,921) was down 15 per cent for houses and 27 per cent for units.

The average time on market for homes in the region increased over year by 11 days to 59 for houses and three days to 60 for units over the past year.

In Richmond-Tweed, NSW, the drop in values was significantly less severe, at -1.2 per cent to a median of $576,000 for houses and -1.3 per cent to $428,000 for units, in the 12 months to February 2019.

However, home sales in Richmond-Tweed (5,342) decreased by a substantial 14 per cent over the same period, while the average time it takes to sell a house increased by seven days to 89 and by two days to 77 for units.

Sales activity in Geelong, Victoria (5,595) was also down substantially, at -14 per cent year-on-year for houses and -38 per cent year-on-year for units.

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On the other hand, house prices improved in Geelong by 0.4 per cent over the year to a median of $568,000, while unit prices went up by 5.4 per cent to $405,000.

Geelong also saw improvements in the average time it takes to sell a home, decreasing by three days to 50 for houses and by 19 days to 56 for units, when compared to February 2018.

The Latrobe to Gippsland region in Victoria saw a 10 per cent year-on-year decline in sales (6,180), though house values increased by 5.9 per cent to median of $361,000 and unit values by 7.9 per cent to $233,000, compared to figures recorded in February 2018.

However, the time it takes to sell a home was faster in the region, by 17 days to an average of 83 days for houses, and by 10 days to an average of 101 days for units.

A fall in sales activity, at -15 per cent, was also recorded in the Sunshine Coast region of Queensland (9,329).

House values fell in the Sunshine Coast as well, but to a far lesser degree, at 1.6 per cent year-on-year to a median of $612,000, while unit values went up by 4 per cent to $449,000.

The time it takes to sell houses in the Sunshine Coast remained stagnant at 75 days, but units are selling three days faster, bringing the average time down to 82 days.

Home sales activity in the Gold Coast area of Queensland (15,475) was 17 per cent lower in the 12 months to February 2019, while median dwelling values were down by 2.8 per cent to $614,000 for houses and by 0.4 per cent to $419,000 for units.

The average home is taking an additional 14 days to sell for houses (average of 78 days) and an additional 13 days for units (average of 91 days) when compared to February 2018,

Home sales activity in Townsville, Queensland (2,976) dropped by 4 per cent in the year to February 2019, while median house and unit prices tumbled by 4.8 per cent to $289,000 and 13.5 per cent to $203,000, respectively.

Movements in the average time it takes to sell homes were mixed in Townsville, with houses taking an extra three days (average of 97 days) to sell, while units are selling three days faster (average of 107 days).

Likewise, in Cairns, Queensland (4,926), sales activity was down 11 per cent year-on-year, along with median home values, which decreased by 0.7 per cent to $364,000 for houses and by 2.1 per cent to $226,000 for units.

Movements in the time taken to sell a home in Cairns were also mixed, with houses taking an extra five days (average of 100 days) to sell, and units selling five days faster than a year ago (average of 99 days).

Overall sales in Wide Bay, Queensland (5,928) was 2 per cent lower year-on-year, though median dwelling prices rose by 0.7 per cent to $294,000 for houses and by 3.8 per cent to $240,000 or units.

The average time it takes to sell a home based in Wide Bay improved over the year, with houses selling five days faster (average of 99 days) and units selling two days faster (average of 126 days).  

Meanwhile, in the Bunbury region of Western Australia, home sales (2,600) contracted by 7 per cent in the year to February 2019, with median house prices dropping by 4.1 per cent to $371,000 and unit prices by 19.5 per cent to $269,000 over the same period.

Homes in Bunbury are taking longer to sell when compared to February 2018, with the time to sell a house increasing by 11 days to an average of 122 days, and units selling 10 days slower to an average of 129 days.

[Related: Pace of property price slump slows to 12-month low]

Metropolitan slump creeps into regional markets
Illawarra region in NSW
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Tas Bindi

Tas Bindi is the features editor on the mortgage titles and writes about the mortgage industry, macroeconomics, fintech, financial regulation, and market trends.  

Prior to joining Momentum Media, Tas wrote for business and technology titles such as ZDNet, TechRepublic, Startup Daily, and Dynamic Business. 

You can email Tas on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

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