Construction has commenced on a futuristic residential project, in Sydney’s northwest, featuring voice command home automation and a circadian rhythm lighting system.
The 74-architect designed ‘smart’ townhomes, currently selling off the plan, are part of a new 6ha masterplanned community at Norwest called Essentia. Each property will also include an integrated home battery storage system designed to reduce power costs plus rainwater recycling and double glazing.
There are 74 architect designed townhomes within the Essentia masterplanned community
Among its hi-tech features is a circadian lighting system has been designed to keep residents alert during the day time hours and ease into sleep at night.
It adjusts the lighting warmth and colour depending on the time — it is more blue during awake time and warmer in the evening to assist with sleep.
The state-of-the-art home automation is voice controlled and is compatible with Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home.
Residents will also be able to relax at a special Wellness Centre to be built at the estate — also powered by solar energy — featuring a swimming pool, gym, yoga area and clubhouse.
The first stage of the townhome development is under construction
Mulpha Developments Executive General Manager, Tim Spencer, said last week’s soil-turning ceremony was an opportunity to celebrate this important milestone with the people involved in this special project.
“We understand we are not just building great homes, we are creating a place of wellbeing, economic opportunity and community,” he said.
“Essential will be the first large-scale residential development in Australia to have fully integrated solar and battery storage solutions for residents.”
Mulpha, is the parent developer of Norwest Business Park and the creator of Bella Vista Waters, Central Park and Sanctuary Cove, Queensland.
Essentia is located on the border of the newly created suburb of Norwest and recently realigned Bella Vista, which were approved by the Geographical Names Board last year.
The site will also feature a landscaped “riparian corridor” with natural waterway and native plants.
Construction has commenced on 6ha site at Norwest
The estate also comprises of 33 large homesites ranging in size from 700 sqm to 750 sqm. These prestige allotments, which will attract housing similar to that of Bella Vista Waters, were released onto the market in September last year with earth works now completed, including grading of blocks and guttering.
Investor eyes are on regional Victoria amid cooler Melbourne market conditions and following a Federal Budget tipped to boost towns and cities outside the state capital.
We’ve collected some quirky and historical listings that savvy investors could turn into money-making opportunities.
118-124 Raymond St, Sale
The heritage-listed building offers prominent street frontage in Sale.
Polished floorboards, coffered ceilings and chandeliers make for a wonderful pub setting.
A wonderful pub setting.
A heritage-listed former Australian Mutual Provident headquarters built in the 1930s is banking on attracting a buyer to Sale.
The prominent building, zoned for commercial use, still has the statues that were a feature of all AMP buildings.
“What’s really interesting about the way in which they created their brand was that they used social values that were represented by the Amicus group of statues,” vendor Ivan Rijavec said.
“They actually used these statues to crown their buildings all over Australia — what’s particularly significant about this one — if you looked at all the AMP buildings — it’s one of the best of its time.
Upstairs is room for a New York-style apartment, or a rooftop bar.
The property was recently in use as a nightclub.
“It was considered to be the best building in the region.”
Mr Rijavec said that, as one of the final builds before the Great Depression began, “it was the last of the buildings of prosperity”.
Graham Chalmer director Chris Morrison said the property was being sold as a commercial building, but had flexibility for a variety of uses.
“For the last ten years it’s been a nightclub and for various reasons that closed down,” Mr Morrison said.
“We’re trying to sell it as a commercial building — a residence upstairs and then two commercial or two retail spaces downstairs.”
103 Mitchell St, Echuca
The gardens are a feature of the Echuca property.
A glassed-in balcony wraps around much of the main residence.
Sitting rooms abound in the quirky property.
An Echuca bed and breakfast with two dwellings and a unique garden is also on the market at the revised figure of $725,000.
The 1000sq m property has a two-storey residence with two bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, a kitchen, lounge room, office, craft room, sauna, spa, display rooms and a large storage space.
The main dwelling at 103 Mitchell St, Echuca is encircled by a wraparound, glassed-in balcony, with flower pots and timber featuring throughout.
“It’s a quirky, unique property,” said Ray White Echuca agent Lucy Piotrowski.
103 Mitchell Street, Echuca is listed at $725,000.
The property is on approximately 1000sq m.
“The person who owns the property lives on site but also rents out the cottage and other rooms.”
Pride of place belongs to the large garden, with a stream fed by multiple fountains, oriental statues and stone footpaths meandering lazily along.
“The gardens are lovely — they’re beautifully maintained,” Ms Piotrowski said.
2730 Traralgon-Maffra Road, Cowwarr
Once it churned out butter, now it churns out artworks.
Paintings and sculptures are on display throughout the home.
You can see why the property has been a fruitful artist’s residence.
A historic artist’s residence and art gallery east of Melbourne is looking for a new owner with a creative streak.
The six-bedroom residence, on 0.51ha with other dwellings including a pottery studio, is listed at a price of $775,000.
“It’s exactly 100 years old — it was built as a butter factory in 1919,” said Leo O’Brien’s eponymous director of 2730 Traralgon-Maffra Rd.
“It’s so solid, it’ll still be there another 500 years.”
A large open dining and living space feels like a great hall.
One of the Cowwarr home’s creative spaces.
A homely kitchen.March 23: Jack Boronovskis’ Victorian property wrap
Mr O’Brien said there had been significant interest from buyers hoping to convert the massive residence and self-contained studio into a “destination B&B”.
“A lot of people take that back road — it’s become a sort-of secondary holiday route,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Particularly during the summer, that road gets fairly busy now.”
Homes in highly walkable neighbourhoods are more likely to hold their value than those in less pedestrian-friendly areas, a new report has found.
The effect holds during a rising market and also during the current slowdown, a paper from Melbourne buyers’ advocacy Secret Agent found.
Sought-after inner suburbs such as Carlton, Fitzroy, Collingwood and Brunswick were among the most walkable in Melbourne, even allowing residents to walk to the CBD, Secret Agent researcher and report author Jodie Walker said.
“Some [buyers] want to be close to work, they’re sick of driving on congested roads so they want to be able to walk to work,” Ms Walker told Domain.
“If they’ve got kids, maybe they want to be walking distance to their school.”
The report compared prices per square metre for select Melbourne suburbs, dividing locations into walkable and less walkable regions.
On average, price growth increased by 0.9 per cent in walkable zones compared to less walkable zones, over the 12 months to February this year, the paper found.
It follows an earlier study by the agency that found a significant price premium for homes in walkable neighbourhoods during a rising market.
Vendors could expect to gain an extra $298 per square metre for their home for every five point increase in its Walk Score, the 2013 study found.
The group plans to repeat the study in future to better assess the effect of walkability in a falling market.
“We can hypothesise that walkability will likely have a protective effect on property value, in a similar way to what has been seen in America,” Ms Walker wrote.
A recent study in Dallas found homes in walkable neighbourhoods held their value by about 2 per cent more than less walkable counterparts during the GFC, while another in Los Angeles found the price premium for walkable homes increased as the economy recovered from the crisis.
“Generally speaking any suburb that’s close to the CBD does hold its value quite well,” Mr Elsom said.
“The closer you are into the CBD, the less boxes a property has to tick for a buyer to purchase them. When you’re further out of Melbourne CBD, people are a lot more discerning on what they want.”
Buyers were often willing to forgo a second car space or a large block so they could live in a “destination suburb” such as Fitzroy or Collingwood, where they could walk to work in the CBD and to local restaurants and cafes on the weekend, he said.
Woodards Carlton North partner Glenn Bartlett said inner-city buyers were looking to be close to cafes, transport, parkland and schools, and were willing to make compromises such as having smaller backyards.
“A lot of people will buy as close to the CBD as they can possibly afford if their broad criteria are met,” Mr Bartlett said.
“We hear from a lot of buyers that they’d much prefer to extend themselves and buy something closer to their places of work, rather than have to battle an extended commute time.”
It’s 2014 all over again — just without the ice bucket challenge.
House hunters in multiple areas across Sydney have been purchasing homes at or close to prices last recorded five years ago as sellers continue to slash their asking prices to counter the current market slump.
CoreLogic figures showed the areas with the biggest reversal in prices were spread across the southwest, Western Sydney and the Hills district and Ryde area.
They included suburbs Cobbity, Denham Court, Catherine Field, Mulgoa and Box Hill, among others.
Many of these areas had been in high demand when the market was booming but rampant housing construction has given buyers more choice, forcing sellers to adjust their prices.
The suburbs were also fiercely popular with investors up until 2017 when banks began clamping down on investment lending, squeezed out much of the previous competition for sales and putting home buyers in the box seat.Tips to keep ahead of the property market
Among the notable price falls were in North Ryde and nearby suburb Meadowbank, where heavy apartment construction helped pull down median unit prices from over $720,000 two years ago to about the $650,000-$670,000 mark.
It’s meant current apartment buyers are paying the same prices they were five years ago.
A similar trend was recorded in Penrith suburb Mulgoa, where the median price of a house was $1.39 million in 2017, but has since dropped to $829,000 — marginally below the level it was in 2014.
Divisions of larger blocks resold as smaller, cheaper lots explained some of the drop in the Mulgoa median, but local agents also reported weakened investor activity had an impact.
Buyers have a chance to get a better deal.
Home buyer Chantelle Stevenson and partner Eric recently bought a block of land in local estate Mulgoa Rise where they will be building their dream home and said their purchase went unexpectedly quickly.
The couple had heard stories about buyers in the surrounding area camping outside sales offices the night before a land release to avoid missing out on blocks and were expecting to come up against strong competition from other buyers.
“We were surprised how easy it was,” Ms Stevenson said. “We knew people had been waiting years for some of these blocks to become available.”
Their experience of competing for property was also much smoother than a year ago when they bought their current home, she added. “We felt like we were in a much position this time as buyers than we were last year.”
1 Dukic St, Bonnyrigg Heights was first listed at over $1.32 million but the price has been cut to $1.06 million.
Developer Mupha executive general manager Tim Spencer said buyers in the estate were capitalising on the choice of properties available, which appealed to first home buyers and upsizers.
Realestate.com.au chief economist Nerida Conisbee said the notable absence of investors in many suburbs, especially those with new housing estates, was creating “good opportunities” for owner occupier buyers.
“There’s a chance to get a better deal,” Ms Conisbee said. “Not only are prices down, but buyers have more time to think about their purchases. They can negotiate more and there is no rush to buy, which was something buyers struggled with during the boom.”
A quiet renaissance is underway in a small pocket of the eastern suburbs, where a high street is shedding its dowdy image to emerge as one of the area’s coolest customers.
Waverley has long stood in the shadow of beachy Bronte and the retail mecca that is Bondi Junction. Like Oxford Street in Paddington, its main shopping strip – known as Charing Cross – faltered when Westfield opened down the road nearly 20 years ago.
Gentrification has finally caught up with this part of the east. While its real estate is still more affordable than Bronte and other nearby beachside enclaves, Waverley has started punching above its weight with its vibrant village atmosphere.
Among the highlights are a bike shop, chic homewares stores, clothing boutiques, a blow-dry bar and two pubs – The Robin Hood Hotel and Charing Cross Hotel, both recipients of fresh renos.
The dining scene is on fire too, including local faves Bronte Road Bistro, Bellagio Cafe, Iku Wholefood and Vacanza Pizzeria.
Carissa Lake was planning to open a cupcake shop in Alexandria a few years ago but decided instead to set up shop on Albion Street in Waverley, near St Catherine’s School.
“When I was working around the clock to open the shop as soon as I could, the neighbours often asked me in for dinner or a drink once I finished for the day,” Lake says.
The Cupcake Princess, a purveyor of delightfully decorated cakes made from scratch each day, opened in 2015. It has since expanded to include a party room next door.
“At first, I had a couple of older residents tell me I wouldn’t last and that I should make sugar-free products. These people are now my regular customers,” Lake says. “Nothing brings a smile to my face like seeing the after-school rush coming in to tell me what happened during the day. I guess I’m the new version of the milk bar.”
Between 2012 and 2018, the suburb’s house price median more than doubled, from $1.205 million to $2.438 million. But the rate of growth slowed right down last year. Units have also increased in value, though less dramatically since 2016.
Bondi Junction’s trains and shops are 1.5 kilometres away – close enough for convenience but far enough away to avoid the hectic town centre.
By bus to Bondi Junction then train to Martin Place, it takes about 25 minutes to reach the CBD. Bronte Beach is two kilometres to the east. A coveted cheap beach parking permit is a bonus for Waverley residents.
Last month, ATO Commissioner Chris Jordan told The Tax Institute conference in Hobart that the ATO had randomly reviewed 300 rental property claims and found errors in almost nine out of 10. Soon after, the ATO announced it would undertake 4,500 audits of taxpayers its data analytics systems had identified as “high risk” – roughly 2,000 more than it undertook last year.
Using data from accommodation sharing platforms, rental property bonds and property sales records, these systems flagged instances in which taxpayers were likely to have either over-claimed deductions or under-declared rental income. The ATO then contacted these taxpayers to offer them the opportunity to make appropriate adjustments to their returns – either through letters or via real-time “nudges” on the web-based platform myTax.
“We really want to help people get it right in the first instance, so that we don’t have to go down the audit pathway,” ATO Assistant Commissioner Gavin Siebert tells realestate.com.au.
“If the claims raised by the data analytics systems aren’t amended or advised, then that’s when we do the reviews. And if we get to the end, that’s when we need to do the audits.”
Siebert says the ATO’s enforcement gave taxpayers the benefit of the doubt and that there were a lot of “genuine mistakes”, which could generally be split into one of three categories – over-claiming interest repayments; confusing repairs and maintenance; and incorrectly apportioning rental income.Nerida’s 2019 property predictions
Over-claiming interest repayments
According to Siebert, the most common errors were related to incorrectly claiming interest repayments.
Current legislation allows investors to offset interest paid on the loan they used to buy an investment property against their assessable income, but Siebert said many investors were continuing to claim interest repayments on the entire loan even when they had refinanced a portion of it for private purposes, which contravenes the law.
The ATO only allows you to claim interest on the portion of your loan that is used to fund an investment property, regardless of whether equity in an investment property is used as security in that loan.
Confusing repairs and maintenance
The second most common mistake was the conflation of capital works and repairs. While the latter can be claimed immediately, in the income year in which the expense occurred, the former must be depreciated over a long period of time.
“For example, let’s say you renovate the bathroom in your rental home. Many investors are claiming the entire cost of that renovation in that one income year, but you need to depreciate that at a rate of 2.5% over 40 years,” says Siebert.
Ben Kingsley, co-host of the Property Couch and chairman of the Property Investors Council of Australia, says investors also often incorrectly claimed immediate deductions when they replaced fixtures and fittings.
“Great examples are things like fences, washing machines, carpets, curtains. When people replace rather than repair them, they need to write them off over a period of time, not as a complete one-off claim,” he says, in reference to the ATO’s rule that only repairs directly related to wear and tear can be claimed as an immediate deduction.
Recent change to the laws around depreciation, however, mean that investors who bought a property after 9 May 2017 can only claim depreciation on an asset if the asset was brand-new, the property was newly built, or the property had been substantially renovated and no-one had previously claimed any depreciation deductions on the asset.
Investors often claim interest on an entire loan amount even when they have refinanced a portion of it for private purposes. Picture: realestate.com.au/buy
Incorrectly apportioning rental income
Just as some investors are claiming interest payments for loans used for private purposes, Siebert says many are also claiming interest repayments during untenanted periods.
“You should only be claiming interest for the periods the property was rented out, or genuinely available for rent,” he says.
Travel expenses no longer claimable
Finally, Kingsley says taxpayers were still attempting to claim deductions for the cost of travel incurred while visiting their investment property on official business.
Investors were able to do this up until 1 July 2017, but changes to the law have since stripped them of this right. Now, only excluded entities or those who are carrying on a business of property investing can claim these expenses.
“The vast majority of investors are doing the right thing most of the time,” says Kingsley. “But there are some real complexities to some of the details in the tax legislation, so I would always advocate seeking out a professional tax agent who specialises in residential property investment.”
Property prices are expected to shoot up by 2022 in several major affordable housing markets across Australia, according to new findings from property research platform Sell or Hold.
Sell or Hold, managed by the independently run Select Residential Property group, looked at 17 markets for the study, each with a median house price of about $500,000.
The research identified the suburb of Karabar in Queanbeyan as likely to see the most price growth over the next three years. The top five is rounded out by Middle Ridge in Toowoomba, Seaton in Adelaide, Ashtonfield in Maitland and Brompton in Adelaide.
Sell or Hold chose the price range of close to $500,000 because investors were most likely to target properties around that price point. This meant that suburbs in Sydney, which has a median house price of $1,062,619, were too expensive to be included in the forecast.
Only significant urban areas with a diversified economy and a population of over 100,000 were part of the study.
Select Residential Property group head of research Jeremy Sheppard said a three-year analysis period was the most accurate way to predict price trends.
“In a 12-month period, there isn’t much time for supply and demand to influence price growth, and a lot of times after three years, supply and demand may have [balanced] again,” he said.
Mr Sheppard said Sell or Hold’s forecast was based on gathering supply and demand metrics, rather than collecting data on individual properties. Demand was calculated by using a variety of metrics, including clearance rates, how quickly homes are selling, discounting rates, and the percentage of renters to owner-occupiers.
Where to look for growth
Mr Sheppard suggested that some suburbs on city outskirts have seen the benefits of a ripple effect in property prices.
“Often, if you have a boom like we saw in Sydney, it tends to start in more affluent areas. Once prices go up, people look for the next best thing. Prices tend to ripple out to fringe suburbs that are possibly less desirable, but far more affordable,” he said.
The predicted price growth for Karabar, which is tipped to increase by about $150,620 by 2022, is a massive 5 percentage points more than the next suburb on Sell or Hold’s list.
With a median house price of $522,986, Karabar is about 20 minutes’ drive to Canberra’s CBD. Mr Sheppard said this may help to explain why prices were expected to climb so significantly.
Aaron Papahatzis of Belle Property Kingston is well aware of that drawcard. “For Karabar and for Queanbeyan more broadly, the attraction would be the easy access to Canberra, as well as affordability and the local shopping and sporting facilities,” he said.
While the bulk of Mr Papahatzis’ buyers are owner-occupiers, he said there was good scope for investors to find strong opportunities in the area.
“The majority of properties we sell are family homes and the rent does stack up quite well. If you’re buying a three-bedder with one bathroom, which you can get for about $500,000, you’d be looking at $520 to $550 in rent payments per week.”
He recommended investors seek out low-maintenance properties in Karabar which were already partly renovated, and said more affordable rentals would perform well, especially among young families.
In Middle Ridge, which ranked in second place in the forecast, it’s a similar story.
“You will have no dramas renting a property out,” Mr Witt said, pointing to four-bedroom, two-bathroom houses as an ideal bet for investors. “These properties just get snapped up really quickly on the rental market.”
With Middle Park’s large blocks, abundance of parks, and quality schools, Mr Witt said the area was performing comparatively well.
Mr Witt said aside from a new land development called The Leas, Middle Ridge itself was not slated for significant development in the near future.
According to Mr Sheppard, however, infrastructure in the wider Toowoomba area may have an effect on Middle Ridge prices. He said projects like the Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport, as well as Toowoomba’s strong economy, were worth considering.
Middle Ridge is about a 15-minute drive to the centre of Toowoomba.
Mr Sheppard advised buyers to keep an eye on Adelaide, which had two suburbs in Sell or Hold’s top five for price growth.
“It seems to have quite a broad range of high demand, relative to supply. There are still plenty of pockets that aren’t going to see much in the way of growth but Adelaide … seems to have clusters of growth,” he said.
“This could be down to affordability, or due to the efforts of the state government … starting to show fruit. It’s not clear what the precise cause is, but there’s definitely a lot of heat picking up in Adelaide.”
He pointed to Adelaide, Brisbane and Canberra as key cities for investors to consider.
Mr Sheppard said there was no common thread that tied Sell or Hold’s top-five performers together. He said the results came down to timing and where each suburb sat relative to the broader market.
Where prices should stagnate
Sell or Hold’s forecast also identified the areas that should see the least price growth. Prices are expected to fall the most in Rosebery in the Darwin area, with a drop of about $3148 expected over the next three years.
Wandi in Perth had the second lowest predicted growth rate, where the median house price is forecast to decline by about $2103 for that same period.
Four of the bottom five suburbs were in Perth and Darwin, with Brisbane’s Bahrs Scrub in fifth place.
“In real catastrophe areas, [poorer price performance] will be because a major industry has gone belly up, as we saw with the end of the resource boom. Those changes in the economy have had that affect on Rosebery, where prices are still falling,” Mr Sheppard said.
Home owners in Sydney’s middle-ring suburbs have taken the brunt of the city’s property downturn, with voters in key marginal seats among those hardest hit by falling property prices, new data shows.
One in every five federal electorates across NSW recorded double-digit house price falls last year, data from Domain has revealed, with the Liberal seat of Bennelong experiencing the biggest drop — its median fell 16.3 per cent year on year.
Electorates with a median house price between $1 million and $1.5 million saw the biggest declines, said Domain economist Trent Wiltshire, with nine of the 15 most affected electorates — including the marginal Sydney seats of Reid and Banks — held by the Liberal Party.
“These are the more expensive areas, but not the most expensive,” Mr Wiltshire said, adding Liberal seats tended to have higher rates of home ownership due to generally higher income levels and an older demographic.
Meanwhile Labor electorates were home to more renters and harder hit by apartment prices falls.
The biggest unit price drops were in the city’s west, north west and south west, with the seat of Fowler — which covers the Liverpool region — faring worst with an 11.5 per cent annual fall.
The marginal Labor seats of Lindsay, in the city’s west, and Macquarie, covering the Blue Mountains, as well as the Liberal seat of Banks, were also among the top 10 electorates for unit price falls.
“A lot of people [in the Liverpool region] are asking what it means, how will it affect me and how will it affect the market,” said Mr Boskovic. “It’s definitely a big question on buyers’ minds and rightfully so.”
While first-home buyers in the area were keen to see negative gearing scrapped, Mr Boskovic said, investors and home owners wanted to see it remain.
He said concern about falling property prices was so strong among residents that he expected to see a swing away from Labor, particularly as the NSW election had already seen a swing to the Liberal Party.
Meanwhile, in the Liberal-held electorate of Bennelong, which had the biggest hit to house prices, the election was front of mind for sellers, said Catherine Murphy of The Agency North.
“Our market is not great at the moment, the selling market is not energised and you’re throwing another thing on it … just another concern [vendors] have,” Ms Murphy said.
She added home owners were concerned about whether they should be aiming to sell before the election, while investors — who now make up a very small portion of her buying pool — were watching keenly to see what happens with negative gearing.
Mr Wiltshire said electorates with a greater proportion of renters were likely to be more welcoming of potential housing-related tax changes.
“Renters might see that policy as a way of lowering house prices a little bit,” Mr Wiltshire said. “Lots of those renters would be looking to buy and they will be looking for government to put in measures to improve housing affordability.”
He added the falling property market was less likely to be a concern in marginal electorates in regional NSW, such as Page, Eden-Monaro, Richmond and Gilmore, which saw price growth for both apartments and units.
Property markets across regional NSW held up better or even saw price growth last year, Mr Wiltshire said, but were now cooling — but not to the same extent as Sydney, which had a far greater boom.
Stewart Jackson, a politics lecturer at the University of Sydney, said falling prices may sway votes away from the ALP in some electorates like the safe and fairly safe Labor seats of Watson and Barton, which had the second and third-highest price falls.
“People are a bit worried about what’s happened, [the vote could sway] a couple of per cent … but I don’t think it will make a great deal of difference,” Dr Jackson said.
He added while renters might lean towards Labor, that might not translate to a victory in areas with a high proportion of renters, where many tenants such as international students would not be voting.
Australian politics professor Rodney Smith, also from the University of Sydney, added while the cooling market was a concern for voters, it would be far from the deciding factor come polling day.
He said economic management, health and education were generally the top three issues that affected how people voted, but he expected both parties to put a strong emphasis on housing policies.
“Both sides probably see the issue as something they can gain from and that they believe in. Labor’s put out its policies and will push for them as a means of improving housing affordability and getting people out of the rental market and buying their own homes. The Coalition will attempt to portray these policies as potentially [economically] risky and dangerous,” Dr Smith said.
MEDIAN HOUSE PRICE DEC 2018
MEDIAN UNIT PRICE DEC 2018
MEDIAN HOUSE PRICE YOY CHANGE (%)
MEDIAN UNIT PRICE YOY CHANGE (%)
OWNED OUTRIGHT (%)
OWNED WITH MORTGAGE (%)
Source: Domain Group data, ABS data. Note: Median is based on six months of sales to December, with minimum of 50 sales required.
It comes with access to a pool, barbecue facilities and no water and council fees. But best of all, weekly mortgage repayments on Australia’s cheapest capital city home will cost you less than a night out at the movies or a slab of Coronas.
Listed with a bargain price tag of just $42,950, 11/565 King Rd, Virginia is Australia’s cheapest residential listing on realestate.com.au, setting buyers back a mere $38 a week in mortgage repayments. That’s based on a 20 per cent deposit of $8590.
However, there’s a catch.
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
The one-bedroom home is set in the Virginia Gardens Residential Village – a 25 minute drive from Adelaide’s CBD, and as such is subject to park rates – $120 per week for singles and $138 per week for couples.
On the upside, the new owner will have access to all facility features, including an inground swimming pool, barbecue areas, and there are no water and council fees.
As for the home, the weatherboard house features a master bedroom with built-in robes, a bathroom, a large living space, and a separate kitchen with storage, and an electric oven and cooktop.
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
There are also two small lockup sheds and garden beds to the front of the property.
Selling agent Katrina Nelsen on LJ Hooker Gawler said interest in the property was coming in thick and fast.
“I’m actually really surprised by the amount of interest we’ve had in the property as it’s not your standard home. Then again, it’s really cheap,” she said.
“Personally I think it would be perfect for truck drivers, FIFO workers, or someone separating or going through a divorce, needing a place to stay.
“I’ve also had some interest from singles. There are a lot of market gardens in the area, so it would be the perfect spot for a person looking to for work.”
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
11/565 King Rd, Virginia
As the home is located within a residential village, Ms Nelson said the prospective new owner would have to be approved by management.
“Apparently it’s a close-knit community out there and everyone gets on really well,” she said.
“You also won’t be able to lease it out as a holiday unit. They (management) want someone to actually live there.”
Virginia is a northern suburb in the Playford Council Region. According to CoreLogic, the suburb has a median house price of $275,000.
First-home buyers are set to determine who will win this year’s federal election, new data shows, with electorates in the outer-ring suburbs of capital cities, including Melbourne, holding key marginal seats.
How these electorates vote across Australia will determine whether Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Coalition government return to power, or Bill Shorten and the ALP take the reins after the election — predicted to be held in mid-May.
In Melbourne, the federal electorates which could see swings between the major parties include Dunkley, which takes in the suburbs of Frankston and Mount Eliza, Casey with Lilydale and Belgrave, and Latrobe with the booming growth belts of Cranbourne and Pakenham.
They are all found on Melbourne’s fringes where first-home buyers have flocked for more affordable homes.
These electorates were more likely to have lower rates of renters, higher rates of home owners with mortgages and lower median house prices compared to safer inner Melbourne seats, Domain data shows.
Domain economist Trent Wiltshire said median house price data over the past year revealed a gap between the inner and outer suburbs — and not just in who they voted for or their property prices.
“Over the one-year change there is a clear pattern, and that is the electorates in inner-city Melbourne with the more expensive properties have seen the biggest house price falls,” Mr Wiltshire said.
“Owners without mortgages are skewed to the [safe] Liberal held seats – they tend to be wealthier and older and bought decades ago pre-property boom. These things combined means they had time to pay off their mortgage.”
The safer inner-city seats were also likely to have a higher percentage of people renting. In the federal electorate of Melbourne, which Greens MP Adam Bandt represents, more than 62 per cent of residents were renters. The electorate has a median house price of $1.17 million which dropped by 15.7 per cent over the past year.
The most expensive house price median in Victoria, $1.528 million, is found in the electorate of Goldstein which includes the suburbs of Brighton, Hampton and Sandringham. Goldstein, represented by Liberal MP Tim Wilson, has seen the median house price drop by 10.4 per cent in the past year.
These figures sat in comparison to the outer suburbs of Melbourne whose medians remained a little more steady.
In the electorate of Dunkley, currently represented by Liberal MP Chris Crewther, the house price median is $621,000. That median rose 53.5 per cent over the past five years, which includes the time since the last election. Over the past year, however, house price medians have dropped by 2.1 per cent.
In Casey, where Liberal MP Tony Smith is the representative, the median now sits at $676,000. The house price median in Casey has risen 54.9 per cent over the past five years, but has dropped by 7.7 per cent between December 2017 and 2018.
One of the best performers in terms of house price medians was the electorate of Latrobe, where fellow Liberal MP Jason Wood holds the seat. The median house price is $600,000 which has risen by 45.1 per cent over the past five years. It has also seen a median rise of 2.6 per cent over the past year.
Monash University’s senior lecturer in political sciences Nick Economou said it was these electorates that would decided the outcome of the election.
“My view is that governments are made or broken in seats on the fringes of the cities,” Dr Economou said. “It’s the same in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide.”
He said first-home buyers in marginal seats would be unlikely to worry about policies or promises regarding cuts to negative gearing tax breaks for investment properties as they mostly could not afford them.
They would be focused on party promises to keep interest rates low, employment rates high and see penalty rates for weekend work being reinstated. These could see a swing against incumbent PM Scott Morrison and his government in some outer seats at the upcoming election, he said.
“Quite often couples in the outer suburbs have both people working. It’s the old-fashioned patriarchy but those working part-time are usually women and they rely on penalty rates to help pay the mortgage. There definitely could be a residual resentment there.”
Victorian federal electorate data by household
Median house price Dec 2018
Median house price – 1 year
Median house price – 5 years
Properties owned outright
Owned with a mortgage
Source: Australian Electoral Commission (AEC); ABS; Domain