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Boom year ahead for property, says real estate analyst

IPSWICH can expect house price increases of up to 5% in the next year, according to a leading Australian real estate expert.

Dr Andrew Wilson, senior economist for Australian Property Monitors, was in Ipswich yesterday to talk to real estate agents and leaders in the industry about the prospects for the Ipswich property market.

His prognosis was positive, based on several factors including Ipswich's intrinsic affordability, its close proximity to Brisbane and its appeal to investors.

He said the growth in Ipswich would not be confined to select suburbs but would be across the board.

"Ipswich provides value, value, value," he said.

"We now see the Toowoomba market with a median (house price) above Ipswich. The city of Ipswich has a median of $330,000 while it is $550,000 for the city of Brisbane.

"Last year Ipswich saw prices go up around 5% and a lot of that energy was in the final quarter where prices went up by a tick under 3%.

"I think we will get between 3% and 5% growth again this year in Ipswich and we may even see higher growth.

"Ipswich doesn't have a wide spread of high-value and low-value suburbs. It is value all the way through."

Dr Wilson said the affordability advantage Ipswich had would drive value-orientated buyers and "particularly first home buyers with that $15,000 grant that the government gives for the new build".

"This has been a big growth area and we are starting to see that new home-build accelerate again," he said.

"This area has a new buzz about it. It is not the old Ipswich of 20 or 30 years ago. The new estates have come here and they have been attractive to young buyers and those looking for a semi-rural environment as well and still live within 30 minutes of Brisbane.

"Ipswich has plus 5% yields and the prospect of high capital growth from a low base and investors will pick up on that.

"The Ipswich market is ticking every box at the moment."

Along with most other Brisbane regional markets, Dr Wilson said Ipswich had "certainly had tough times over the last couple of years for various reasons".

"But we are starting to see that growth come back again," he said.

"Sixty-year-low interest rates have really activated and intensified buyer activity and the advantage Ipswich has is that it is the most affordable region in the Brisbane environment.

"There are issues still with the local economy in terms of unemployment levels, but the Ipswich population grows by around 3% every year so it is always going to have trouble absorbing those growth levels in terms of employment.

"But there are plenty of upsides with the Queensland economy."

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