It's a buyers market out there: agents

This Borilla St home failed to sell at auction at the weekend but the seller is confident the local market is strong.
This Borilla St home failed to sell at auction at the weekend but the seller is confident the local market is strong. Tara Miko Emeauction

LOCAL real estate agents are reporting the softened Emerald market continues to attract investors, despite lower rental yields than the previous record highs.

Described as a buyers' market, the median house price for 2012 rests at $460,000, which Century 21 agent Marina Outlaw said was indicative of the impact of the mining downturn.

"I anticipate this median will drop further," Ms Outlaw said. "This mining downturn certainly caught everyone by surprise and, yes, sale numbers are dropping.

"I don't believe sellers and some agents are in line with the market by not adjusting their prices accordingly and wondering why their homes are sitting on the market."

The house price drops have also flowed into the rental market.

There are reports that houses previously rented at up to $900 a week have been reduced to $600 a week.

CD Adams' principal Clinton Adams predicted the rental rates would continue to fluctuate.

However, Mr Adams believed the market had largely corrected itself.

"In saying that, I have had many inquiries from people who have seen returns from term deposits in banks slowly decrease over the last few years. Interest rates are heading down around 4% and we are possibly looking at further decreases in the next few months," Mr Adams said.

"While the rental market has softened, the Emerald market still offers solid returns for many."

Both agents agreed the state of the property market was intricately linked with the mining industry outlook.

"The mining downturn, closures, job cuts and negative media hype have made many buyers nervous," Ms Outlaw said.

"I think we all do forget at times that Emerald and our region has a strong base rurally that, like mining, keeps ticking along in the good markets and the bad," Mr Adams said.

Homeowner confident of sale

DOUG Jones is confident he will sell his home, just not by auction.

Mr Jones had listed his Borilla St property with Ray White for auction at the weekend, and despite receiving no bids, said enough interest was registered that it wouldn't stay long on the market.

"I think that interest will continue to blossom as we look to sell by the more traditional means," Mr Jones said.

Mr Jones has re-listed the property at $545,000 and, with expressions of interest from Emerald and outside buyers, said it was only a matter of time before it sold. Successful open home viewings gave Mr Jones the idea an auction would be ideal.

"Because it is really quite a unique property… we weren't sure what the market would consider as an appropriate price," he said. "We are confident this property won't be on the market for long."

Moranbah developments bring relief

THE development of affordable housing in Moranbah's Belyando Estate will deliver added relief to the crippled market in the mining town, Isaac Mayor Anne Baker said.

"(The) council has held a long-term passionate position of providing and championing affordable accommodation in the Isaac region," Cr Baker said.

"Housing affordability continues to improve with the moderation of market forces and council continues to supply the market to sustain affordable solutions (and) improvement now and into the future.

"Development of the Belyando Estate projects will facilitate market delivery of vacant residential land in timely co-ordination with market and community demands to avoid housing rental peak spikes."

State Government funding through the Royalties for the Regions program has provided the Isaac council with assistance in developing infrastructure extensions, Cr Baker said.

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