Buy house at or below pre-pandemic prices in QLD
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There are the Queensland suburbs where median house prices have fallen since the pandemic began, with one ‘hidden gem’ boasting both affordable homes and million-dollar mansions.

REA Group analysts compared median house values in October 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic was declared by the World Health Organisation, to median house prices in October 2021.

They found 15 suburbs across Queensland where values had fallen over that two year period but even some of those same suburbs are seeing some eye-watering prices for local prestige houses – perhaps proof that the secret is already out.

Top of the list was Willow Vale, a rural locality near Upper Coomera on the Gold Coast.

The data shows house values were $64,500 less in October 2021 when compared to what they were back in October 2019, when the median sales price was $729,500.

This two-storey house on a 492sq m block in Willow Vale is located within the housing subdivision and recently sold for $506,100

It was followed by St George, where median values have dipped $62,500 over the same period.

This sprawling residence on a 1136sq m block at 25 Bowen Street, St George, is on the market for $290,000 negotiable

Rounding out the top five was Gooburrum (Wide Bay), Cannon Valley (Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday) and Glenwood (Wide Bay).

While the overall median house price in Cannon Valley may be down o n pre-pandemic prices, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some high-end homes hitting the market, like this one, called Pepperberry House

The Brisbane median house price is now $820,000, while the Greater Brisbane median house price reached $610,000 in November, according to the REA Market Trends report.

Back in the third quarter of 2019, the Real Estate Institute of Queensland Market Monitorsaid the median house price for the Brisbane local government area was $680,000 and it was $530,000 for Greater Brisbane.

REA director of economic research Cameron Kusher said that while the median house price overall might have fallen in a particular suburb, that did not mean that the right properties were not achieving top dollar.

“In many of these places, there is new development going on so the price point may be lower now,” he said.

In Willow Vale, which is a mix of acreage properties and a residential subdivision, recent sales have ranged from modern, near new houses around $500,000 to a contemporary residence on 8.15ha that recently changed hands for $4 million.

This sprawling modern house on a 8.15ha block in Willow Vale recently sold for $4 million

Ray White Upper Coomera agent Russell Cosgrove, who sold the suburb record-breaking $4 million house, said the locale often flew under the radar due to its unique demographic.

“The suburb is split exactly in half by big acreage blocks and homes in one section and a residential area that was developed on old farmland about five years ago,” he said.

“In that smaller residential section, houses sell for around $500,000, but in the acreage section, I would say the median there is pushing $1.76 million.”

And even the record $4 million sale is expected to be eclipsed soon, with Mr Cosgrove recently listing a six-bedroom showstopper on 11.19 hectares.

Listed for sale by EOI, 34 Fern Hill Dve in Willow Vale is expected to eclipse the recent record sale of $4 million.

“A lot of people don’t even know where Willow Vale is, not even people in the next suburb over, Upper Coomera,” he said.

“The residential section has kept the suburb median off the map but it is a hidden gem.”

Elsewhere, there are three towns in the Wide Bay region where buyers may still be able to bag a pre-pandemic bargain – Glenwood, Dundowran and Childers.

A three-bedroom house on a 1089sq m block in Dundowran sold for $410,000 in August, but prices have being climbing, with a median house value difference of around $200,000 between Dundowran and neighbouring Dundowran Beach.

On a 1089sqm block, 15 Crawford Dve, Dundowran, has three bedrooms and sold for $410,000 in August but there have been some big sales since then

Mr Cotton said Mossman also offered million-dollar acreage properties on the outskirts of town, but prices overall remained affordable, with a four-bedroom house on a 802sq m block in the Daintree Horizons estate recently selling for just $420,000.

There are no mainland Brisbane suburbs with a median price under $420,000.

“The buyers in Mossman, some are ex-locals who moved away and now want to come home, others are professionals who have sold out of Sydney and Melbourne wanting a tree or sea-change.

“There are even buyers in their 30s doing that, buying a $500,000 house and banking $1.5 million.

“It is the same in the surrounding areas, like Wonga Beach and Cooya Beach – it is very busy.”

Just 15 minutes from Mossman, prices in Port Douglas can be jawdropping. PHOTO: Supplied.

Woodend (-$15,500) and Rosewood (-$5000) in Ipswich may also offer some respite for weary buyers.

Local agents said new housing developments in the area were likely having an impact on prices in the region.

Prices in Blackall are also now $2000 less than they were pre-pandemic, while in the Darling Downs-Maranoa region, prices are $12,500 lower in Goondiwindi.

Buyers might also want to take a look at Kooralbyn (Logan-Beaudesert), with the data showing that median house prices there have dipped $11,250.

Listed for offers over $515,000, this modern four bedroom house at Kooralbyn sits on a 0.43ha block

Mr Kusher said other areas where median house prices had fallen nationally were “smattered” across regional locations and the outlying suburbs in more populated areas where new developments were underway.

“But what this list shows is it is a small list (of suburbs where prices are cheaper than before the pandemic),” he said.

“That really talks to the strengths of the market.”

The suburbs where you can still buy at pre-pandemic prices (houses)

(Suburb; Median Price October 2019; Median Price October 2021; $ Difference)

Willow Vale (Gold Coast): $729,500; $665,000; $64,500

St George (Darling Downs-Maranoa): $265,000; $202,500; $62,500

Gooburrum (Wide Bay): $320,000; $270,000; $50,000

Cannon Valley (Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday): $500,000; $465,000; $35,000

Glenwood (Wide Bay): $165,000; $135,000; $30,000

Dundowran (Wide Bay): $408,000; $382,500; $25,500

Childers (Wide Bay): $252,500; $235,000; $17,500

Woodend (Ipswich): $375,000; $359,500; $15,500

Mossman (Cairns): $343,750; $330,000; $13,750

Goondiwindi (Darling Downs-Maranoa): $352,500; $340,000; $13,750

Kooralbyn (Logan-Beaudesert): $333,750; $322,500; $11,250

Babinda (Cairns): $249,000; $239,500; $9500

Cambooya (Toowoomba): $332,000; $325,000; $7000

Rosewood (Ipswich): $285,000; $280,000; $5000

Blackall (Outback): $130,000; $128,000; $2000


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