Premium property markets still strong despite recession

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Australian property prices have largely remained steady during the COVID-19 recession and new data has revealed house prices have thrived in some of the country’s most high-end suburbs, signalling demand for premium property is still very much alive. 

The data from shows median house prices in a number of premium Australian suburbs grew significantly in the 12 months to September 2020. The analysis took into account the 10 most expensive suburbs in each state and then ranked them in order of growth to generate the top 10 growth suburbs nationally.

But it’s not just exclusive property that is in the sights of the lucky few – luxury cars have been snapped up at breakneck speed, according to industry leaders.

Chief economist at Nerida Conisbee said this is “a very unusual recession”.

“There’s no shortage of cash, there is so much money out there,” Ms Conisbee said.

“If we have a look at who’s losing their jobs, they do tend to be younger people very exposed to hospitality, tourism and education. People that are employed in many highly-paid, white-collar jobs just aren’t seeing the same sorts of negativity.”

Luxury suburbs with ‘village feel’ showed biggest growth

While not the most expensive suburb to buy a house in the country, house prices in Brisbane’s St Lucia experienced the biggest year-on-year growth nationally of 36.82% to a median of $1.47 million.

Ben Jacobs of Ben Jacobs Real Estate, Paddington said amenity is one of the biggest appeals of the area.

“The proximity to the university is obviously a huge drawcard, it’s on the Brisbane River … there’s lots of parkland in St Lucia as well,” he said.

“There’s lots of restaurants, cafes, coffee shops as well, it’s close to South Brisbane so it’s just got so much accessibility.”

Mr Jacobs said demand from home buyers in St Lucia has grown during the health crisis.

“Since COVID, the average days on market in St Lucia has gone down to about 23, which is an incredibly short turnaround time for any market. We would definitely say 30 days is a super good market,” he said.

Ainslie, ACT came in at number two nationally with year-on-year median house price growth of 30.05% and Samford Valley, QLD claimed third place with a jump of 28.88%.

Looking state-by-state, gorgeous Sydney waterside suburbs featured heavily in the top 10 premium suburbs with the biggest median house price growth in New South Wales. Castlecrag on Sydney’s Lower North Shore came in at number one with 25.94% growth to a median of $3.35 million.

Melbourne’s blue-chip Hawthorn East was the premium suburb with the biggest median house price growth in Victoria, recording a jump of 10.67% to a median of $2.25 million.

Licensed estate agent at Jellis Craig Boroondara Chloe Quinn said Hawthorn East boasts a strong amenity factor, which is important for buyers in a post-COVID world as they will potentially be spending more time working from home.

“The local shopping precincts, the access to transport, and the school belt because that’s really what underpins everything,” she said of the key amenities.

“Along Auburn Road, there’s the little village across from the Geebung [Polo Club] or the coffee shops, it’s just such a nice little village.”

Elsewhere, Floreat (+23.20%) showed the biggest median house price growth in Western Australia, Glenelg East (+24.41%) took out top spot for South Australia and Lenah Valley (+16.63%) came in at number one for Tasmania.

According to Ms Conisbee, it’s likely house pricing in luxury suburbs will continue to be positive while other areas could see falls.

“When you get to a suburb level like City of Melbourne, there’s about 12,000 vacant apartments there at the moment. That will most certainly have a big hit on pricing for inner city apartments, but go elsewhere and you’re not going to see that same pricing.”


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