Chinese appetite for Gold Coast property soars to record highs in 2010-11: Colliers

Chinese buyers accounted for nearly a third of foreign purchases of Queensland residential real estate during the 2010-11 financial year, with record amounts spent on Gold Coast property, according to research compiled by Colliers International. 

The Gold Coast was China’s preferred local authority during the 2010-11 year, and they spent a total of $66.9 million (40% of the total amount spent by foreigners) in the area, followed by Brisbane with $30.4 million and Logan with $4.8 million. 

Gold Coast figures for 2010-11 were 128% higher than the previous year, when Chinese buyers spent $29.3 million – the largest amount spent by Chinese buyers in a single year since Colliers began to monitor foreign investment figures.

Tony Holland, Colliers International Gold Coast director of project marketing, says the Gold Coast is a favoured destination for Chinese and other foreigners because of its year-round sunshine and attractive lifestyle opportunities. 

Furthermore, with two expanding international airports – Brisbane and the Gold Coast – close by, it is easily accessible both domestically and internationally. 

In December 2011, China Southern airline announced it would launch up to four direct flights a week between Coolangatta and the Chinese city hub of Guangzhou by 2015. 

“Within five years China is expected to eclipse New Zealand as the Gold Coast’s number-one tourism provider,” Holland says. 

“With continued strong tourism, the popularity of the Gold Coast with foreign buyers is encouraging and, with the current stock of new apartments now down to a 10-year low, these figures should provide developers with confidence to commence new projects over the coming 12 months,” he says. 

While overall foreign investment in the Queensland has declined since the GFC (the 2007-2008 financial year), Chinese buyers have not been deterred, spending almost $107 million in the state’s property market over the year to June 2011, a 50% increase on the $71.5 million they spent in the previous financial year.

Colliers records 203 transactions by Chinese nationals in 2010-11 financial year – with $106.8 million the largest amount spent in a single year by Chinese buyers, notes Lynda Campbell, Colliers International Gold Coast research manager. 

Although the numbers are slightly down on last year, China buyers also dominated spending by foreigners across Brisbane, with a total of $30.4 million spent over 61 transactions. The year 2010-11 was the fourth consecutive year that Chinese buyers were the most prolific foreign purchasers of Brisbane property. 

More than three-quarters (77%) of property transactions by Chinese nationals in Queensland were for investment purposes, while the remaining 23% were for owner-occupation. 

During the past 10 years, China has spent a total of $366.3 million on Queensland property.


Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger was a property writer at Property Observer


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