The Illawarra Region In NSW Continues As Top Performer In September Quarter

CoreLogic today released its September quarter largest regional area insights which once again confirms The Illawarra region in New South Wales as the country’s standout regional performer by recording the largest annual increase in home values of 13.0 per cent for houses and 17.0 per cent for units.   In contrast, Townsville stood as the only region where values for both houses and units fell over the year to September.  Based on overall transaction activity, the Gold Coast region experienced the biggest fall with dwelling sales down -8.7 per cent over the year to August 2017. 
 
For rental rates, the Gold Coast saw the largest increase in advertised rental rates for houses, up 6.0 per cent ($30/week) over the year to September 2017, followed by Richmond-Tweed houses at 5.6 per cent ($25/week). Townsville and Bunbury were the only two regions to see rental rates fall over the 12 months to September 2017. 

New South Wales 

  • Of the three regions analysed for this report (Newcastle and Lake Macquarie, Illawarra and Richmond-Tweed), all experienced home values growth over the year to September 2017; the largest increase was within the Illawarra region, where house and unit values increased by 13.0 per cent and 17.0 per cent respectively, followed by Newcastle and Lake Macquarie.  
  • In terms of sales activity for the three NSW regions, volumes fall over the year to August 2017 with The Illawarra region experiencing the biggest fall in sales activity with transactions down -5.4 per cent, or 323 fewer homes selling when compared to August 2016. Rental rates increased across all three regions.  
  • Houses in the Richmond-Tweed region saw the largest increase with rental rates up 5.6 per cent, followed by houses in the Newcastle and Lake Macquarie region (5.0 per cent).  

Queensland 

  •  Dwelling sales fell in four of the five regions over the year to August 2017 with the largest fall seen across the Gold Coast, where sales volumes are down -8.7 per cent, followed by Townsville (-6.3 per cent), Cairns (-5.3 per cent) and the Sunshine Coast (2.6 per cent). Across the Wide Bay, sales are in line with one year ago.  
  • Townsville was the only region to see home values fall, while the Sunshine Coast region saw the largest increase in house values (7.1 per cent), and the Gold Coast region saw the largest increase in unit values (6.9 per cent) values.  
  •  Across the Queensland rental market, the Gold Coast region recorded the largest increase in rental rates for houses (6.0 per cent), while Townsville saw rental rates fall over the year.  

Victoria

  • Sales activity was down -1.9 per cent across Geelong, while the Latrobe-Gippsland region saw a slight increase (1.8 per cent) in the amount of homes transacting over the year to August. Both regions saw home values increase over the 12 months to September, with values increasing by 8.8 per cent for houses and 6.1 per cent for units in Geelong, compared to the Latrobe-Gippsland region, where house and unit values increased by 4.8 per cent and 1.9 per cent respectively.  

Western Australia 

  • Bunbury region saw house values increase by 2.6 per cent over the year to September 2017, while unit values fell -4.4 per cent. Sales volumes across the region fell -3.9 per cent over the 12 months to August, with current activity -14 per cent below the five year average. Rental rates in the Bunbury region fell -3.6 per cent for houses and -9.1 per cent for units when compared to September 2016. 

 
Across all three quarters in 2017 (March, June and September) The Illawarra region has consistently recorded the largest annual increase in home values each quarter, followed by the Newcastle & Lake Macquarie and Richmond-Tweed regions.  
 
Cairns has seen minimal movement in home values, while Townsville has recorded a negative annual increase in home values each of the quarters. Townsville and Bunbury were the only regions to see rental rates fall over the 12 months to March, June and September for both houses and units, while Wide Bay units remained unchanged over the same period. 
 
CoreLogic research analyst Cameron Kusher said, “Overall, our latest data points to an increase of value growth in regional markets, particularly those which are located adjacent to capital cities. As people are priced out of certain capital cities, buyers now appear to be looking to these adjacent regions.” 
“Home owners in Sydney and Melbourne have seen a substantial rise in housing equity over recent years. Subsequently, we are seeing some evidence that these buyers are starting to look for holiday and investment properties in certain regional markets which is also providing an impetus for some of the value growth we are currently seeing,” he said.