First-home buyer activity has surged in southern Geelong this year, new data from major lender NAB shows.
Suburbs like Armstrong Creek, Belmont and Grovedale have become the epicentre for first-home buyers, the loan data for three months to October 31 shows.
While NAB lending to first-home buyers increased 21 per cent against the 12-month average nationally, it doubled in Geelong’s 3217 postcode, which takes in Armstrong Creek and Mount Duneed.
In the 3216 postcode, including Belmont and Grovedale, first-home buyer lending jumped 52 per cent.
Low interest rates, expected for at least the next three years, as well as continued government support should ensure first-home buyers remain very active in 2021, Andy Kerr, NAB’s executive for home ownership said.
“We’ve seen first-hand the value of the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme and the continued strong demand for it,” he said.
The loan data also revealed rising trends in Leopold (34 per cent), Ocean Grove (27 per cent), central Geelong (16 per cent) and the city’s eastern suburbs like Newcomb (12 per cent).
Low samples meant trends couldn’t be accurately recorded in more affordable northern suburbs, including Lara; and Geelong West and Herne Hill.
Buxton agent Tony Moorfoot said affordability was key to most first-time buyers.
“That’s why people buy a block in 3217 or they buy something that’s 30 to 40 years old and established in Grovedale that still gives you bang for your buck,” he said.
“You’re still priced around that $550,000 mark, so it’s under $600,000 and so they’re getting stamp duty concessions.”
Sarah Droscher and Jack Stipcevich settled on their first house in Grovedale this week.
The couple, who have been saving while living at Jack’s parents’ Mount Duneed farm, were on the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme and engaged buyers advocate Tony Rindfleisch and Loan Market mortgage broker Chris Appleford to support their purchase.
“When we were looking, houses were coming up and going that quick. I know there was the pandemic but Grovedale was very popular and very reasonably priced houses as well, for the land size and for the quality as well,” Ms Droscher said.
The couple is keeping an eye on the future, choosing the $576,5000 three-bedroom Carnarvon Drive house on a 674sq m block for its potential as a future investment.
Mr Stipcevich said facilities had improved in recent years, including a new train station (ideal for his commute to Melbourne), Epworth Hospital and the expansion of Waurn Ponds shopping centre.
Demand in regional areas has started to translate into higher prices with the November CoreLogic Home Value Index showing 5.7 per cent growth in regional verses capital city growth of 1.1 per cent in year-to-date.
Growth figures from realestate.com.au also shows rising prices in suburbs that first-home buyers are searching.
First-home buyer hot spots
|Suburb (postcode)||Median house price||12m change|
|Armstrong Creek (3217)||$536,000||-0.3%|
|East Geelong (3219)||$760,000||27.7%|
|Mount Duneed (3217)||$580,000||5.4%|
|Ocean Grove (3226)||$757,250||9%|