Hotspot: Mirrabooka one to watch

Hotspot: Mirrabooka one to watch
Hotspot: Mirrabooka one to watch

Though currently there is little interest in the Perth suburb of Mirrabooka from investors, close proximity to the CBD and the beach, investment in infrastructure and low prices relative to more fashionable neighbours suggest it could be a good long-term investment opportunity.

The St George National Property Hotspots Report has identified Mirrabooka as one of 24 suburbs across Australia that are likely to provide a strong value proposition when buying a home

The suburb is located just 11 kilometres north of the Perth CBD and an equal distance from the nearest beach. Built on an elevation, it offers views of the CBD and surrounding suburbs.

House prices in Mirrabooka are well below those of suburban neighbours in the city of Stirling. According to RP Data, the median house price is $362,500, up 4.3% on a year ago and 42.3% over five years.

Ninety percent of houses in Mirrabooka are detached, providing scope for both internal and external renovation. According to the St George report, land parcels are often quite large, suggesting there is potential for some subdivision of blocks.

 

Mirrabooka

Balcatta

Nollamara

Balga

Driving time to CBD

30 minutes

20 minutes

20 minutes

22 minutes

Median sales price

$362,500

$500,000

$415,000

$370,000

% change in price in last year

4.3%

0.6%

1.5%

4.2%

Average time on market

71.2 days

47.2 days

50.1 days

82.3 days

Median weekly rent

$350

$380

$350

$320

Indicative gross rental yield 

5%

4%

4.4%

4.5%

Source: All RP Data, except driving time to CBD, sourced from Google Maps

Mirrabooka’s rental market is greater than the Perth average, with 32.5% of all dwellings detailed as rentals. The median house rent for Mirrabooka is currently $350 per week, with indicative gross rental yields sit at 5%.

A difficult market: Agents

The sentiment from agents operating in Mirrabooka is that it is currently a buyers’ market, with vendors having to reduce their prices to attract buyers.

When Property Observer spoke to Michael Grogan, an agent from Carter Giorgi Real Estate, he had just sold a property in Mirrabooka at a “huge price” reduction.

Grogan says prices have to be priced right or they just won’t sell.

Currently, cheap rentals and low prices have made Mirrabooka popular with recent migrants and low-income earners.

But Grogan says that its proximity to the CBD means the suburb has the potential to change in the same way that Balgowlah West has done and become a sought-after suburb.

Suzana Angeleska, from Power Realty Alexander Heights, is marketing Mirrabooka houses that started off being listed for $350,000 but are now being offered for $330,000.

Even with the reduced prices, she says offers are coming in for $310,000. “There are not many buyers, but lots of properties available, it’s a buyers’ market,” she says.

“There are no investors coming into the market and no new developments.”

But she also sees potential for the suburb: “It’s very close to the city and central.

“It has good facilities and is close to the freeway. It is close to suburbs like St. Andrew and Northwood, which are very expensive,” she says.

According to the St George report, Mirrabooka “enjoys good quality public transport, with a number of bus routes servicing the suburb. Access to the suburb by private vehicle is relatively easy along the Reid Highway”.

Infrastructrure

 The City of Stirling has started investing in the infrastructure of Mirrabooka. This year, the suburb will benefit from a $13 million urban renewal project designed to enhance public infrastructure, public transport and development opportunities.

The project includes another road connection and the creation of two mixed-use sites to cater for residential and commercial developments in and around the town centre.

In 2011 projects including a new community town square designed to accommodate community events, expansion of the Mirrabooka shopping centre and the refurbishment of the bus station were completed.

Currently, Mirrabooka Village providing smaller shopping conveniences, and the Mirrabooka Square Shopping Centre is a major shopping centre and includes a medical centre and public library. The Malaga Markets, in the neighbouring suburb of Malaga, also offers retail amenities.

Long-term view 

The Mirrabooka housing market appears to have solid prospects for future capital growth. The suburb shows relative affordability compared with most of the surrounding suburbs. Mirrabooka enjoys a plethora of local shopping amenities and has quality public transport. Many of the houses show considerable renovation potential, which is an excellent way to boost their value. 

Last year houses took on average, 56 days to sell, suggesting there may be some scope for negotiation. However, they recorded relatively low vendor discounting of -5.6%.

According to current RP Data information, the average number of days Mirrabooka houses are on market has risen to just over 71.

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger was a property writer at Property Observer

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