The Queensland residential land market has had somewhat of a resurgence during 2013 off the back of steady pricing and availability of finance. Further data provided by the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) to the March 2014 quarter identify the median vacant land sale price (sub 2,400sqm) averages across South East Queensland at $219,000 which represents a quarterly increase of 1.9% off the back of a strong increase in investment demand.
Despite this upward momentum in median lot prices, consideration must be made for the reducing lot size which essentially has resulted in a more sizeable growth in land values on a per square metre basis. Across the South East Queensland region the median lot size is just 486sqm on average, this has shown significant compression in the last few years, however since the peak of the market in 2007 represents a 10.55% reduction from 543sqm.
The volume of lot registrations averaged approximately 15,000 per annum in the years prior to 2007; post this period there was a steady decline to the lowest rate recorded in 2012 at less than half this average. Demand for housing declined post GFC due to more stringent lending criteria and low confidence surrounding employment, similarly development halted with finance difficult to obtain combined with some compression in land values. Despite this staggered fall, the low in the market recorded in 2012 is now behind, with 2013 showing the first period of increase. Looking at each of the regions, Gold Coast is showing a strong comeback increasing lot production by 48.37% in the year after being one of the first regions to decline supply. Sunshine Coast also has witnessed over 35% growth in registrations over the year likely due to pent up demand and affordability of the region.
The increase in sales transactions has had a positive uplift in the average vacant lot sale value with Sunshine Coast showing good growth over the last year.