Bundaberg market update

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Sales market

The median house price for the Bundaberg region was recorded at $265,000, representing a decline of 1.9 per cent over the September quarter. A decrease of 1.8 per cent was recorded for the 12 months to September 2013 period.

According to local agents, these results are simply a reflection of the market’s adjustment to the 2013 January floods and that median price reductions were always to be expected given the numerous amount of discounted flood affected properties sold.

For example two of the most affected suburbs by the floods, Bundaberg East and Bundaberg North, saw their quarterly median prices decrease by 48.8 per cent and increase by 56.7 per cent respectively over the quarter. In addition to regular sales, both suburbs have seen their share of flood affected sales over the June and September quarters, however their vendors had softened some of the blow of reduced sale prices through flood insurance payouts.

Preliminary house sales numbers held steady over the quarter, down a mere 2 per cent. Looking more closely at these preliminary figures we note that the proportion of house sales in the sub-$350,000 price bracket accounted for just over 82 per cent of total sales, compared to the September quarter last year where this proportion was around 75 per cent.

While house sale activity hadn’t exactly kicked off over the September quarter, the general market is still going well, even if the floods have been a spanner in the works. Housing developments in Coral Cove and Elliot Heads will increase not just to housing stock but also overall population of the area.  Another positive is that agents are also starting to notice that people are slowly coming back to work in the real estate industry.

Avoca was the best performer of all suburbs in the region, with its median house price up 10.3 per cent to $322,000 over the quarter and 5 per cent over the year. According to reiq.com suburb profiles, this family-friendly suburb is located in the south-west corner of the town, about five minutes by car from the CBD. Most properties are brick-and-tile homes on standard quarter-acre blocks, although larger prestige homes are also available.

The unit and townhouse market in Bundaberg saw a significant increase in its median price over the September quarter.  However due to the relatively low amount of sales compared to houses within the region, such median price changes are expected and should be interpreted carefully.

Rental market

After showing improvement in June, Bundaberg continued to record a fall in its vacancy rate, posting 1.8 per cent as at the end of September. The region’s rental market is reportedly still undergoing adjustment, with vacant properties at low levels due to the many people displaced following the floods.

According to the RTA’s September quarter rental statistics, the median rental price for three bedroom houses recorded an increase of $15 to $285 per week, compared to a year ago. Two bedroom units also increased between the same period, up $10 to $230 per week for the September quarter 2013.