Lismore market appealing to some first home buyer and investors: HTW

Lismore market appealing to some first home buyer and investors: HTW
Lismore market appealing to some first home buyer and investors: HTW

While Lismore City caters for all potential buyer types, the vast majority of sales activity appears to be located within the $250,000 to $350,000 price bracket, according to Herron Todd White’s latest monthly market report.

The property advisory firm says that the primary reason for this is that it appeals to not only the first home buyer but also "the savvy investor."

The gross rental yields for a single residential house or unit would barely register 5 percent for properties above $400,000.

However, within the $250,000 to $350,000 range, HTW have started seeing better returns, particularly if current mortgage lending rates stay below 4 percent for the medium to long term.

One example would be a three bedroom home at 25 Junction Street (above) that is for sale for $315,000.

HTW noted coupled with basement areas, it is not uncommon for property owners to retro fit the space into a self contained granny flat to generate a bit more coin "regardless of whether such improvements are Council approved or not!".

Dwellings and units in this price range are generally original or may have some minor cosmetic improvements, hence making the potential capital gain that could be gleaned from investing in a new kitchen, bathroom or even addition of an en suite if existing space permits) an inviting prospect whilst potentially improving the rental base.

Within this price range, one would expect to purchase a 3-bedroom, 1- to 2-bathroom, single or double garage brick and tile home in Goonellabah with potential rent from $275 to $375 per week depending on location, availability of services and general condition.

At $250,000 to $350,000 the range is simply seen as being affordable and a good starting point for a reasonable quality of accommodation.

From that base, first home owners and investors can value add to the existing structure.

The slowest moving sector, particularly in the past three years, is the typical, unrenovated brick and tile 2-bedroom, 1-bathroom unit with carport, usually within a complex of three or four units.

"This seems rather peculiar given that the price range is approximately $150,000 to $200,000 and is still able to rent for around $200 to $250 per week.

"However, hidden costs such as an ill-managed body corporate and outstanding maintenance issues may give cause for concern."

Herron Todd White noted that first home buyers have higher expectations as their first home.

"Other reasons could be that first home buyers simply have higher expectations and want that 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom home with a double garage as their first home. It does happen. We have completed a number of To Be Erected valuation reports with first home buyers buying land for around $180,000 to $200,000 and then requiring a new build contract at $200,000 plus.

Images of a chained millstone around the neck pop up in one’s mind when witnessing this paradigm shift.

Times have certainly changed since the 1950s and 1960s."

Modern, residential properties in the $400,000 plus price bracket are generally reserved for upgraders and there is reasonable demand.

In the rural townships of Casino and Kyogle, the favoured price range for investment property is lower at $175,000 to $275,000, but interestingly, the rental is higher as a gross yield percentage to the market value of the property.

Similar to Lismore City, original 2-bedroom units within Casino and Kyogle are also hard to move with overall market value being relatively stagnant and even dipping throughout the year.

"But then again, a Casino or Kyogle $110,000 to $120,000 unit is still able to attract rent of around $170 to $200 per week.

"Lastly, the old adage of location, location, location still weighs in heavily in the eventual sale price achieved with convenience of location to shopping, schools and services contributing to demand for housing close to the CBD and local neighbourhood centres," it concluded.

Lismore Htw


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