What your money can buy: Mackay versus Brisbane in the property market
MACKAY'S property market has changed significantly in the past six months, with a huge amount of new listings and more buyers testing the market.
According to Explore Property director Ben Chick, there is definitely more interest from buyers, but it has not yet affected prices too much.
"Overall, more houses are turning over," Mr Chick said.
"Price are not heading up yet, but there is less discounting by vendors."
For the first time in several years the sellers and buyers are speaking the same language, homes are being sold so more people, who may have tried to sell a few years ago, are coming back to try again, with more sold signs being seen around town.
It's still a value market compared to places like Brisbane, because of the size of the downturn.
So what can your money buy in Mackay compared to Brisbane?
Up to $200,000
At this price level the options are limited in Brisbane. According to a realestate.com.au search there are only 154 listed properties in this price bracket. Most of the listings are for units anywhere within 10km of the city, with homes available in western suburbs in this price bracket. Two and three bedroom units are available in older units within a 5km radius of the CBD, with some one-bedroom studio apartments available in the city.
You can secure a three-bedroom renovated home in Durack (14km from the CBD) for only $150,000. It's an older home with a combined kitchen, dining and living area.
In this price bracket there is more choice in the unit market. Buyers can secure a one-bedroom, 18-metre-square unit in the city centre for $135,000.
There are options in Mackay with realestate.com.au listing three times the number of properties available in Brisbane. There are about 450 listings that fit this bracket but many of the homes are for auction so could fetch a higher price.
If you're looking for a home for under $200,000 there are older three and even four bedroom homes available. There is a home in Paget on the market advertised for offers more than $190,000. The block of land is more than 1000 square metres and the home includes a second bathroom, and two family rooms. There are also numerous two-bedroom workers' cottages available in the Pioneer Valley that have been renovated.
In the unit market, buyers are spoilt for choice with two and three-bedroom units within the price bracket in North Mackay, Andergrove and other well established suburbs.
Up to $350,000
There are a lot more options for people looking to spend between $200,000 and $350,000 in Brisbane, particularly for the unit market. According to realestate.com.au, there are more than 1100 listings in greater Brisbane that fit the criteria. A buyer can pick up the large order style two and three bedroom units in the 5km to 10km ring around the CBD.
A person can pick up a 158 square metre townhouse in Sunnybank Hills for $335,000. A big selling point for the older units in the 'green' suburbs is the low body corporate costs.
If you are looking for an home in a Brisbane suburb below $350,000, then you are not going to be getting much change. Which is a shame because you are going to need some money for renovations. Right now you can pick up a 40-year-old, two-bedroom workers cottage in Bald Hills for $300,000.
According to realestate.com.au, there are about 780 properties listed for between $200,000 and $350,000 in the Mackay region. A buyer could expect to pick up a well maintained three or even four bedroom older home or a decent three bedroom newer home in the newer northern suburbs.
There is a brick home in Bucasia that can be picked up for $329,000. It includes two bathrooms, has a large yard and built-ins in the master bedroom. Or in Slade Point you can pick up a three bedroom home with a pool for about $310,000.
Up to $500,000
Most home buyers looking to enter the market for the first time will be looking at this price bracket. In Brisbane, there are certainly a lot of potential in the home market and there are plenty of properties available in the 5km to 10km ring around the CBD. There are also more homes available in the eastern suburbs of Brisbane and on larger blocks.
In the unit market, a buyer can start looking at some of the more modern spacious apartments. A buyer can pick up a two-bedroom unit in Carina for $449,000. The property includes two showers. There is also off-street parking available which is a big sell considering it's not an option at some inner city and older units.
If you are not looking for three or four bedroom homes in this price bracket you are looking for something unique. There are plenty of options available with big home on big blocks available in some of the expanding suburbs, such as Bucasia, Blacks Beach, Ooralea. Most of the homes on offer are brick with two bathrooms and plenty of yard.
Out of town you are going to find homes with plenty of land for a large shed or swimming pool. If you had $385,000 you could pick up a home in Habana on 2.5 acres with a fully fenced, three-bedroom, two bathroom on the block.
In the unit market, buyers in this price bracket should be looking at units around the CBD and Mackay Harbour. You won't get the penthouses but you will be in the luxury unit market. For $400,000 you could pick up a three-bedroom unit on the Breakwater Access Rd. It also includes two bathrooms and two parking spaces. The 250 square metre unit also has separate dining and living areas, and air conditioning. Best of all it's a very short walk to the beach.
Up to $1 million
Finally buyers can look at homes inside a 5km radius of the city centre. There is opportunities in some of the sought after suburbs of Bardon, Gaythorne and Tarragindi. But you will be luck to find anything more than three bedrooms. They are usually older homes with not a lot of space, but you won't be expanding, you will be renovating. If you are looking for something not to renovate then your best bet is a townhouse.
A buyer can pick up a three-bedroom, two-bathroom town house in Gaythorne for the mid to low $600,000. The townhouse has upstairs bedrooms and downstairs living space with front and read courtyards. The town house is on a 181 square metre block.
There is only a select few properties in the $500,000 to $1 million price bracket. A realestate.com.au search lists only about 400 in this price bracket and only about 20 units. If you are looking for a home you can buy something less than five years old or a rural property with a large homestead.
If you have $860,000, then you can pick up a new five-bedroom home in Mt Pleasant. At 420 square metres under roof and with a three-car garage, multiple living spaces and a sprawling outdoor entertainment area overlooking the pool, the house is ready to accommodate. All five bedrooms are large.