CQ housing market spikes to record high in two years
A SPIKE in Central Queensland's housing market has resulted in the region's best building approval figures in more than two years.
Dennis Bryant, regional manager at Master Builders, says a mix of mining, defence and general positivity injected into the market was to thank for the rising figure of house developments.
In a report released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics and Master Builders, a 14 per cent increase in standalone home buildings was a sure sign houses were making a comeback over units.
Data for the 12 months, ending on September 2017, showed a four per cent increase in commencements for detached dwellings; a blatant contrast to the whopping drop of 40 per cent for unit commencements.
Mr Bryant said the region will put the after effects of the mining investment boom behind them in the year ahead as the number of house developments slowly increased.
"Builders are indicating for the first time in two to three years, they're coming back from Christmas break with work ahead of them,” he said.
"We can expect to see a steady rise in houses being built across the region, nothing too drastic, but still a rise.”
Mr Bryant said the drop in rental vacancy rates late last year was a positive sign that more people were looking to build.
The rates dropped from seven percent to four per cent in just five months.
These pendulum swings came in the wake of Adani's announcement that Rockhampton would be one of the FIFO hubs for the Carmichael mine.
"There was an immediate pick-up in optimism around the region since Adani,” he said.
Mr Bryant addressed the other mines in the Bowen and Gallilee Basins as other factors rubbing off on the local economy.
"Future employment opportunities becoming available are also making people more optimistic about the region,” he said.
Mackay had also seen similar growth, as significant resource projects planned for the region were now more viable with the upswing in commodity prices.
The surplus housing, left as a result of the mining investment boom, had been worked through and demand was back for new construction.
Mr Bryant said with so few new homes being built over the past two years, it wasn't hard to bounce back.
The Australian Defence Force continued to invest heavily in the area with Mr Bryant saying the region was yet to feel the full benefits from Shoalwater Bay expansion and redevelopment.
He also highlighted the importance renovations had on keeping the economy afloat.
"The high cost of buying a new home will encourage many owners to stay put and renovate rather than sell and upgrade,” he said.
"We've had very steady renovations in commercial expansions, too.
"Selling in a depressed market just doesn't work, renovations have been a lifesaver.”