The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Rockhampton property market remains unknown: HTW residential

The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Rockhampton property market remains unknown: HTW residential
The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Rockhampton property market remains unknown: HTW residential

When most people think of the Central Queensland economy, they think of the resource sector, particularly coal and gas, according to a recent Herron Todd White (HTW) residential repot. 

The current COVID-19 epidemic is going to have a negative impact on key drivers, so it will be interesting to see what impact this may have on the property market in the short to medium term, the valuation firm said.

"Yes, it is true that Rockhampton itself is heavily influenced by these two mega industries however in addition to this, the Rockhampton region is considered to be one of the most diverse economies within central and regional Queensland," the valuation firm said. 

The region thrives on a range of other industries including acting as a regional government hub, being one of the top two regional Queensland towns for education services and facilities, a huge agriculture basis and it has always been a long term hub for the railway, construction and defence industries. It is also seen as an emerging tourism destination.

The report suggests this diverse range of employment industries has seen Rockhampton minimise its volatility over the past decade with limited numbers of swings in the property market compared to neighbours such as Gladstone to the south, Emerald to the west and Mackay to the north.

"After a slowly declining six year period from late 2013 to mid 2019, we have finally started to see the property market respond in a positive way with growth recorded in both sales activity and sale prices across many sectors of the market in the past six to nine months.

"So what’s driving this change, you may ask. Well in hindsight, the catalyst that turned the ship around was the largely unexpected federal election result in May 2019 when unprecedented swings across regional Queensland resulted in a massive boost in confidence to the resource sector," the valuation firm said. 

Production increased during the back half of 2019, creating a wave of new jobs and increased confidence.

"Initially we saw a tightening of the vacancy rates for rental properties which quickly resulted in increased rents. Sales followed suit shortly afterwards," the valuation firm added. 

In more recent times, government infrastructure spending is at an all time high with multi million dollar projects currently underway including the duplication of the Capricorn Highway between Rockhampton and Gracemere, the Parkhurst Highway upgrade, a billion dollar Rockhampton Ring Road project and ongoing Defence Force projects to name a few.

"Of course as I write this the COVID-19 outbreak is impacting the world and Australia. Unprecedented times and its impact is already having a disastrous effect on all levels of the economic front. The extent of its impact locally on the property market is still largely unknown.

"Hopefully the powers at be are making the right decisions in managing this crisis and we all get through this together sooner rather than later." 

A riverside apartment in Rockhampton City was sold for $485,0000 in April.

The 505/2-4 Victoria Parade home (pictured below) comprises three bedroom, two bathrooms, open plan kitchen, dining and living area, and two parking spaces.

It features separate laundry, storage space, full-length balcony and views of Fitzroy River and mountains. 

The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Rockhampton property market remains unknown: HTW residential

A current listing is a Rockhampton brick home priced at $249,000.

The three bedroom, one bathroom house is situated at 54 Denison Street (pictured below).

It is situated close to hospital buses and shopping centres. 

The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Rockhampton property market remains unknown: HTW residential

Note regards COVID-19
This edition of Month In Review had its topic defined in late February with submissions from our offices collated through to late March. During this period, shifts in the social and economic landscape due to COVID-19 became increasingly dramatic, as demonstrated by the varied information provided by offices over the course of three weeks.
This month’s residential theme on baseline property market drivers remains a common thread, and provides an indication of what influences to monitor as the property sector recovers post-crisis.
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