Western Queensland house values suddenly become hot property

Western Queensland has become a real estate hot spot with home values in Winton and Mt Isa jumping dramatically in the past year, according to CoreLogic.

Feb 22, 2021, updated Feb 22, 2021
Mt Isa was named as the most polluted post code in Australia Photo: ABC

Mt Isa was named as the most polluted post code in Australia Photo: ABC

CoreLogic said council regions recording the strongest growth conditions were mixed across Australia’s in-land rural markets, however areas of central west and north-western Queensland comprised four of the top five regions for the largest rises in house values over the past year.

There has been a well-defined shift to regional centres since the pandemic as people sought out safety and affordability or brought forward plans to escape the cities, but much of the talk has related to places like Noosa and Byron Bay.

To investigate broader impacts, CoreLogic looked at inland regional towns where years of drought have had a devastating impact on local economies.

It found an improvement in many areas but that has also coincided with a resurgence in many commodity prices and a return of the wet weather pointing to an end to many years of drought.

Broadly, housing values across regional Australia (+7.9 per cent) increased by more than four times the growth rate recorded across the combined capital city regions (+1.7 per cent) over the 12 months to January 2021.

But the jump regional areas has been like the rain – not everyone has got it. The Western Downs area was up six per cent for the year but down more than 28 per cent on its 2013 peak.

Of the larger population centres, Mt Isa came in at the top of the list with house values jumping 23 per cent, according to CoreLogic.

Winton beat that with a rise of 40 per cent. Further north, Cloncurry showed a similar result, with values rising 37.1 per cent over the year. This was on the back of sales activity lifting 38.7 per cent to reach 43 house sales last year. Murweh, based around Charleville, also performed well.

“Despite the strong gains, house values remain 39.3 per cent below their 2013 peak at Mount Isa, highlighting the previous weak conditions that were evident between mid-2013 through to the market finding a floor in August 2019,” CoreLogic said.

Sale numbers were small compared with Australian suburbs but western Queensland was showing a jump in values not seen in a decade. Only 21 houses were sold in Winton during the period but that’s considerably more than the previous 12 months.

It found 41 of the 91 council regions analysed recorded house values that remained at least 10 per cent below their historic highs.

“The larger rural population centres arguably show less risk in housing market trends due to their more diversified economies, however this is not always the case.”




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