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Queensland Lures Property Investors like no other State

Friday, August 09, 2013

Terry Ryder, 30 July 2013
 

Queensland’s status among the economic growth leaders of Australia has slipped in recent years, but its standing in the eyes of property investors remains undiminished.

Western Australia and the Northern Territory lead the country on economic growth, with Queensland a distant third.

The ACT has the nation's lowest unemployment followed by WA, while Queensland, with the exception for the struggle state Tasmania, now has the worst. WA is way out in front on population growth, with ACT second alongside Queensland, with the Northern Territory and Victoria challenging.

But property investors are oblivious or simply don’t care. Queensland has long held a reputation as the place to buy and nothing so far has shaken that conviction.

Overall, Western Australia is the national leader these days based on economic indicators – and Perth is the leader for price and rental growth - but more investors are buying in Queensland than in WA, according to the loan figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In the 2013 financial year, Queensland was the star of my hotspotting business.

The Top 10 Queensland Hotspots report outsold all our other state/territory reports by a considerable margin. The next most popular state, WA, attracted only half as many customers as Queensland did.

Our Queensland report sold more than NSW, Victoria and South Australia combined.  

When it comes to individual location reports, Queensland again topped the poll. The top five locations for Hotspotting buyers throughout the 2013 financial year were all in Queensland: Gladstone, Surat Basin, Mackay, Townsville and Emerald.  

Nine of our 12 most popular locations were Queensland regional centres.  

And, no, it’s not because we are based in Queensland. Only 20% of our report buyers were Queensland-based in the financial year 2013. We get most of our buyers from NSW and Victoria.  

So why is Queensland so popular?  

I think, in part, it’s because Queensland has an enduring reputation as a centre of growth. It has a track record for rising population and economic prosperity going back decades and investors are taking the long-term view that this will remain so.  

It’s also because Queensland is the most decentralized state or territory in Australia. All other states/territories have the bulk of their populations in their capital cities.  

Queensland is different. The state has stronger, prosperous regional areas than anywhere else in the nation and many of those places have well-established records for growth.

While Brisbane and tourism icons like the Gold Coast, the Whitsundays and Cairns have struggled in recent years, regional centres like Toowoomba, Emerald, Mackay, Gladstone, Roma and the towns of the Western Downs region have all delivered good price growth.  

Queensland offers unique or near-unique features to investors.

Nowhere else in Australia has a Gold Coast (probably not a bad thing, because the Gold Coast is a poor performer on capital growth, with houses and units on average still worth less than five years ago).

Nowhere else in Australia has a Gladstone, the nation’s leading industrial city.

Few other states have a Toowoomba, an inland city with 140,000 residents, a diverse economy and a boom resources province (the Surat Basin) on its doorstep.

Few other states have a Mount Isa, a remote mining town which is also a regional centre of 20,000-plus residents.

Few other states have a Townsville, a regional city with the population, economic diversity and strength of a capital city.  

And, with the exception of WA, no other state has the resources sector oomph of Queensland – a factor that will continue long-term, despite current weakness in the coal sector.  


For these and other reasons, Queensland lures property investors like no other part of Australia. 
Terry Ryder is the founder of hotspotting.com.au 

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