Rush to Surf Coast, Geelong as high-end splurge pushes values

18-20 Honey Suckle Way, Armstrong Creek, sold for $721,000 in November. It occupies a 678sq m block.

A rush of buyers to the Surf Coast has sparked a jump in house values, new research shows.

CoreLogic’s quarterly regional market update shows house sales jumped 15 per cent on the coast, while unit sales rose 69 per cent.

The research shows the additional demand helped house values rise 8.7 per cent over 12 months to more than $955,000.

Values also climbed 4 per cent in Greater Geelong to nearly $596,000, despite a 2.3 per cent drop in sales for the year to just over 4000.

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The relative lack of stock in the region, brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, helped bolster prices, but the data also shows values for homes in the upper 25 per cent price range grew faster than the market as a whole.

Hayeswinckle director Michelle Winckle said buyers honing in on quality homes and larger properties was leading to more sales worth more than $700,000.

“People are really thinking if they’re going to be stuck at home, what would they want to live in,” she said.

“There might not be as many sales (overall) but there is a lot more that are higher quality selling.

“There is a lot more $700,000 to $800000 to $900,000 sales, even up to $1m. I’ve done a lot more this year than I’ve done in previous years.”

8 Bombora Street, Torquay, sold for $970,000 in November.

CoreLogic’s Head of Australian Research, Eliza Owen, said traditional drawcards for regional areas, such as lower density levels and cheaper prices, coupled with the normalisation of working from home had sparked the increased interest.

“Migration numbers from the ABS show net internal migration to the regions rose to a record high in the June quarter,” she said.

“This was because movements to regional Australia increased, while departures from the regions slowed. As a result, demand for dwellings will have risen at a time when the stock available for sale is relatively low.”

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CoreLogic Head of Australian Research, Eliza Owen.

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McCartney, Torquay agent Tim Carson said the Surf Coast market had picked up in the past few months.

“Since September places are selling in excess of the range and we’re finding there is a number of people bidding on properties,” he said.

Though it was traditionally a busy time for listings, Mr Carson said a lot of stock was selling before it hit the market.

But Torquay’s urban growth was also boosting sales, he said.

42B Mervyn Street, Newtown, sold for $1,040,000 in November.

“There’s more properties, more people that are turning them over, more people that are upgrading and all those places where people bought blocks of land and built investment properties have decided now is the time to cash in and sell because the market is so good.”

Despite the lift in demand, Ms Winckle labelled Geelong a sellers’ market due to the scarcity of stock and predicted a lot of homes would sell right up to Christmas Eve.

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