Riverina Highlight Report Q2 2013

The Riverina Highlight Report analyses the performance of residential real estate markets within the city of Wagga Wagga and the towns of Junee, Tumbarumba, and Tumut. The intention of this investigation is to identify trends and commonalities that exist between each sub-market, and most importantly to gain an appreciation of the underlying drivers of each particular market.

The Riverina region, located 500 kilometres southeast of Sydney and 300 kilometres north of Melbourne, remained an important part of the states economy, with agriculture, retail and manufacturing the areas largest industries. Population estimates provided by the Australian Bureau of Statistics indicated that the regions population declined between June 2011 and the corresponding period in 2012. This was consistent with a wider shift toward major coastal areas observed in New South Wales over the past decade. Wagga Wagga, the regions largest city has recently seen the growth of value added industries such as oil refineries, a battery recycling plant and a seed crushing plant. The city is also experiencing a growing diversity of residential product, with the construction of retirement living units, and luxury apartments near the local railway station.

Most sub-markets experienced a strong house activity over the 12 months to March 2013 along with firm median prices. Attached dwellings such as apartments, villas and townhouses did not represent a significant share of dwellings in most sub markets with the exception of Wagga Wagga, where strata-titled residences accounted for 16.4 per cent of all residential dwellings. Units and townhouses did not perform as well as free-standing houses, with softness in activity and an overall decline in median price. Vacant land sales also remained soft, with a limited number of transactions across all submarkets.