Helensvale Property Watch Q1 2011

Area Characteristics
Helensvale is located 13km north of Surfers Paradise and was the first integrated suburb built on the hinterland fringe of the Gold Coast. People tend to be attracted to the Helensvale Area for its modern facilities, accessibility, connectivity and topographic advantages in comparison to other areas of the Gold Coast. Helensvale is a vital public transport hub for the region and is expected to further develop as a transit node. The area is very well connected to the greater Gold Coast via the Gold Coast Highway, Pacific Motorway and the Helensvale railway station.

The area has a Westfield and a major train station along the Gold Coast and Brisbane train line ensuring that Helensvale is well connected and serviced by amenity making it an ideal place to be close to the world renowned Gold Coast beaches yet far enough away to avoid the hectic lifestyle. Hope Island and Sanctuary Cove are within the 4212 postcode and offer a unique lifestyle experience with an abundance of waterfront properties to wet the appetite of those seeking fun, sun and leisure. For the purposes of this report, the suburbs of Helensvale, Hope Island and Santa Barbara are included in the Helensvale Area. All mentioned suburbs fall within the 4212 postcode.

Prestige Housing Market
There has been an average six sales per six month period in the Helensvale prestige million dollar plus market. An above average amount of transactions occurred during the six month period ending September 2010, amounting to 11. Considering that demand in the prestige market for South East Queensland property has been slow as a result of the effects of the Global Financial Crisis (where many potential buyers lost out in the equity markets), the eleven sales recorded is a positive sign for the market. It is a reflection that well positioned product in highly desirable areas, which are serviced by easily accessible amenity and within reach of main employment nodes can attract potential buyers when priced to the market appropriately. Evidence that the settled sales have been transacting at a lower price is shown when observing the house median sales price for the September 2010 six month period, at $1,085,000. This equated to a decrease from the previous year of 5.7 per cent. Total spend for all sales in the million dollar market was $9.9 million for the six month period ending September 2010. This was down from $29 million over the previous year, equating to a decrease of 66 per cent.

As the median house price is a reflection of what has been transacting in the marketplace for a given period, it does not truly reflect the value of property in an analysed area. To ascertain change in capital values, PRD Research undertook a resales analysis to track change in the value of property. Houses that resold over the six month period ending September 2010 experienced an average softening in capital value by 1.4 per cent per annum.

The Gold Coast prestige market has been one of the hardest hit since the financial crisis occurred in 2009. Looking ahead towards 2011 and beyond, capital values in the Helensvale prestige market will likely experience a gradual return in the second half of 2012. Gold Coast investors should keep a watchful eye on future rises to the cash rate, the unemployment rate and tourism on the Coast.