Yeppoon Property Watch Q4 2011

The following Property Watch investigates the house and land markets comparing the Yeppoon Area to the Rockhampton Area. This report also highlights the trends influencing these property markets and factors contributing to its competitive environment. For the purposes of this report the Yeppoon Area encompasses the suburbs highlighted in yellow on the report map, while the Rockhampton Area is highlighted in pink.

Area Characteristics
Located on Keppel Bay, the Greater Yeppoon Area is a coastal region based around the suburb of Yeppoon. This region is situated in Central Queensland around 700 kilometres north of Brisbane, the state capital, and 40 kilometres from its nearest regional centre of Rockhampton. The major drawcards for the region are predominately the long stretches of beaches and group of islands located just off the coast, known as the Keppel Islands. These islands form the basis of the local tourism industry. In the north of the Greater Yeppoon Area is the Byfield State Forest and National Park which is popular with Four Wheel Drive enthusiasts.

House Market
The Yeppoon Area house market had experienced significant growth in values, through strong activity levels until the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2008. A trend that was also replicated in the Rockhampton Area. Since the GFC, the Yeppoon Area has experienced significantly less activity and a correction in property values. Over the past two years, the Yeppoon Area has averaged 170 settled house sales, with the first half of 2011 experiencing 154 transactions. This equates to a softening of nine per cent from the two year average. Over the same period of time, activity in the Rockhampton Area also declined by nine per cent to 545 sales. Although activity has declined considerably from three years ago, there is renewed optimism in the market, with enquiries from potential purchasers increasing recently, as a direct result of the mobile workforce from the resource boom.

On an individual suburb level, the most active suburb over the June 2011 six month period was Yeppoon with 81 settled transactions, followed by Taranganba (36 sales) and Emu Park (31 sales). When looking at the Rockhampton Area, both Gracemere and Norman Gardens experienced 152 settled sales, followed by Frenchville (148 sales) and Berserker (110) sales.

The median house price for the Yeppoon Area closed at $405,000 for the first half of 2011, equating to no growth over the 12 month period.

The Rockhampton Area increased its median price by 1.6 per cent over the year to close at $285,000. Analysis of the price point distributions comparing the June 2011 half year period to June 2010 has shown a slight decrease in each price segment above $300,000, with only an increase in activity in the $200,000 to $299,999 bracket. The most active price point over the June 2011 period was $ 300,000 to $ 399,999 bracket, which attained 32 per cent of sales. The Rockhampton Area experienced a slight increase in activity in the $300,000 to $399,999 bracket, which also accounted for the majority of sales at 37 per cent of total house sales.

PRDnationwide Research has conducted a resale analysis on the Yeppoon Area house market over the June 2011 six months. This analysis revealed an average annual capital appreciation of 4.9 per cent per annum. These houses were held for an average period of seven years and three months. Houses in the Rockhampton Area averaged 6.1 per cent growth per annum, with an average holding period of five years and five months. Characteristic of many holiday markets, this region is more susceptible to the downturns and the prolonged softening in median price has likely had a strong affect on capital values in the region. However from a buyers standpoint, the discounted property prices and lack of competition in the market means there is ample opportunity to purchase a discounted property.

Unit Market
Activity in the Yeppoon Area unit market has fluctuated over the past decade, ranging from just over 20 to 90 sales in a six month selling period. Since the low interest rate period of 2009 activity has declined significantly, with the first half of 2011 experiencing 21 sales . The most active suburb over the June 2011 six month period was Yeppoon, with 12 of the total 21 sales. Unit sales in the Rockhampton Area did not far that much better, with only 33 settled sales. Sales were evenly spread across the suburbs of Rockhampton, with Kawana registering the most at nine sales. Due to the nature of the volatile unit activity, the median price has also fluctuating significantly. Over the most recent period, the Yeppoon Area has recorded a median unit price of $322,000, registering a 13.6 per cent decrease over a 12 month period. The Rockhampton Area median price was $285,000, decreasing over 12 months by 9.5 per cent.

A resale analysis on unit product sold within the June 2011 half year was conducted to ascertain the returns to home owners who sold within this period. This analysis revealed an average annual capital appreciation of six per cent per annum. These units were held for an average period of eight years and six months. Units in Rockhampton have received an average capital growth of 5.9 per cent with an average holding period of five years and four months.

In terms of the price point distributions comparing the June 2010 to June 2011 half year periods, it is observed that there has been a decline in activity over most price brackets. The only price segment to register a significant amount of activity over the June 2011 six month period was the $300,000 to $399,999 bracket, with 43 per cent of the total sales. The Rockhampton Area experienced a decrease of activity across all but one price brackets. Only the $100,000 to $199,999 experienced an increase of activity. The $200,000 to $299,999 bracket still accounted for the majority of sales, at 37 per cent.