Brisbane's average house price hits new high

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Real estate industry is seeing solid growth in Queensland's south-east but a downturn in regional centres, a new report

brisbane-and-039;s-average-house-price-hits-new-high photo 1 Photo: Brisbane's median house price is rising, but not apartment prices. (ABC News: Isobel Roe)

There is a two-stroke economy in Queensland's property market, with the state's south-east booming while many regional markets struggle, a report by the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) has revealed.

Centres hit hard by the mining downturn — including Rockhampton, Townsville, Mackay and Gladstone — saw median prices fall 27.7 per cent since 2012.

Unit markets in Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Townsville, Mackay and Gladstone fared even worse with median prices plunging almost 44 per cent in the past five years.

The Gladstone market faced the most significant challenges with the annual median price dropping from $458,000 in 2012 to $295,000 this year.

The REIQ report attributed the poor performance to the mining downturn and a declining population in the regions.

In contrast, Brisbane's average house price hit a new high of $665,000 this year, up from $505,000 five years ago.

REIQ spokeswoman Felicity Moore said the increase represented "consistent growth for the market".

"This is remarkable given there's been some economic forces that have been detracting from the state's economy," Ms Moore said.

House prices on the Gold Coast also grew steadily, improving 6.8 per cent to $620,000 in the year to June.

The REIQ report said State Government investment and construction in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games had boosted the local economy.

brisbane-and-039;s-average-house-price-hits-new-high photo 2 Photo: An oversupply of units in Brisbane is forcing apartment prices down. (612 ABC Brisbane: Jessica Hinchliffe)

The only blip on the radar in the south-east was Brisbane's unit market which fell almost 3 per cent due to increased supply and falling demand.

Ms Moore said in the regions, any future housing recovery would be closely tied to the local economies and populations.

"When jobs dry up, people leave town and that means there are houses in oversupply and that's what has happened," Ms Moore said.

"There are several mines that are setting up and ramping up their production levels … this is going to attract workers back to the area.

"Typically [workers] will rent, so you'll see vacancy rates drop a little bit and then they'll move into buying once their job security is a bit more firmly established."

She predicted that barring any disruptive events — such as a state election — regional communities should start to see recovery in the market.

"What we know from history is that people tend not buy and sell while we're in a campaign period and they'll wait till the election's been finished," Ms Moore said.

"Particularly as we get closer to that … we may start to see a slow down as the media attention on when the date will be set begins to ramp up."

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