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Working in Tasmania stories

20pc rise tipped for Hobart homes

Edition 190_Houses

Property prices in Hobart could rise by 20 per cent in the coming 12 months, according to Property Logic researchers.

This would follow a 14.3 per cent rise in 2017 and would exceed even the boom years for Sydney and Melbourne during the past decade.

Property websites Domain and CoreLogic reported that Hobart’s 14.3 per cent surge in its median house price over 12 months had exceeded every other capital city.

An unprecedented total of $4 billion sales were signed off in Tasmania in 2017.

And seven of Australia's 10 most in-demand suburbs are in Hobart, according to research by realestate.com.au.

South Hobart tops the national ranking, with Mount Stuart at number three, Battery Point at five, and Bellerive, Mornington, Hobart and North Hobart also in the top 10.

The median dwelling price in the city is now $396,000 according to CoreLogic, making it significantly more affordable than Sydney (average $906,000) or Melbourne ($710,000).

However, the Tasmanian boom is not just about bargain hunting. The top end of the State's market has raced past 110 sales of a million dollars or more, edging in nine months above a two-year-old record of 109 for 12 months.

The full year's tally is expected to comfortably exceed 140.

Money magazine's Simon Pressley wrote: "We feel that Hobart’s growth cycle today is comparable to where Sydney was in 2014.

"All of the metrics that we analyse suggest that there’s currently no end in sight.

"Affordability and the significant improvement in Tasmania’s economy are driving housing demand, while supply is incredibly tight."

Mr Pressley described Hobart's property market conditions as "like a flock of seagulls fighting over a chip".

After correctly anticipating the resurgence of Tasmania’s economy, Property Logic commenced actively investing in Hobart real estate in 2014.

Prices were attractive and the city's lifestyle and "MONAisation" were beginning to be appreciated nationally.

Property Logic's timing was proven good: the number of properties listed for sale has halved since it started its move.

Money enthused: "Most Australians don’t realise that Hobart’s increase in job volumes over the past 12 months is four times the national average and more than double that of the next best capital city.

"Tasmania is building an international reputation for unique tourism experiences, world-class agriculture and advanced manufacturing. Hobart is also a university city.

"From new luxury hotels to an airport expansion, a major hospital upgrade and a new university, the pipeline of infrastructure and major job-creating projects is diverse and extensive."

Hobart now boasts Australia’s highest rental yields and interstate investors have been taking advantage of the fact that the cost of holding a property in the Tasmanian capital is effectively nothing.

According to SQM Research, Hobart’s vacancy rate of 0.4 per cent is the lowest it has recorded in any capital city since it began keeping records in 2005.

"Rents will increase even further. Our analysis of building approvals shows that Hobart’s pipeline for new housing is very low," Money said.

"Hobart is the only location in Australia that has the combination of an affordable entry price, an economy that is already strong (and still improving), hardly any impact on investor’s annual cash flow and a tight supply pipeline for as far as the eye can see."

The President of the Real Estate Institute of Tasmania, Tony Collidge, said the local market was "streets ahead" of other Australian cities.

He said scant supply and strong demand had created "a perfect storm".

Mr Collidge told The Mercury: "Prices are only going to go one way: they will continue to go up.

"Over the next two or three years, I think Hobart prices will increase significantly if something doesn't happen to change our present trajectory."

CoreLogic researcher Cameron Kusher said the market's strength was based on affordability and was being lifted by interstate migration.

"Businesses are now a lot more open to people working remotely and a lot of people from Melbourne own properties in Tasmania and probably want to retire there," Mr Kusher said.

QBE’s Australian Housing Outlook Report, released in October, tipped a more modest rise than Property Logic with an average 10.8 per cent annual gain between now and 2020.

Only Canberra houses (16.3 per cent) were expected to increase by more than Hobart houses.

The QBE report singled out Hobart as the clear leader for apartment values, with its forecast growth of 8.7 per cent, well ahead of second-placed Adelaide with 3.2 per cent.

The Chief Executive of QBE Lenders’ Mortgage Insurance, Phil White, said Hobart usually accounted for 40 to 50 per cent of Tasmania’s population growth, but during the past five years this had escalated to 70 per cent

“With the challenges in Sydney and Melbourne’s markets, Hobart is a smart lifestyle choice for people who are happy to move interstate,” Mr White said.

Boom times for Hobart landlords, obviously mean tougher conditions for would-be tenants who have found it harder to find a rental property in 2017 than at any other time in more than a decade.

Only Sydney is tougher for renters than Hobart, according to National Shelter’s two-yearly Rental Affordability Index.

Hobart rents have increased by 14 per cent over 12 months, according to National Shelter, while Launceston has seen a 9 per cent rise.

The Managing Director of SQM Research, Louis Christopher, said Hobart renters could expect on-going, tight rental conditions and higher rents in 2018.

“In Hobart, the rental situation remains very difficult,” he said. “There were just 102 properties available for rent in September, giving rise to the record low vacancy rate.

SQM recorded a 7.5 per cent rise in asking rents for Hobart houses and 8.1 per cent for units over a year.

The Treasurer, Peter Gutwein, said: "Strong property prices reflect the State’s strong economy and demonstrates that Tasmania is becoming an increasingly popular place to live and raise a family."

He said the Government’s Affordable Housing Strategy was set to treble the amount of affordable housing by 2025.

"We are well on the way to achieving this, having already delivered more than 440 homes to low-income households as part of our Affordable Housing Action Plan," Mr Gutwein said.

In November, the Government announced a $9 million joint development with the Hobart City Council to create 25 low-cost residential units in the CBD.

Local architects Cumulus Studio will develop a concept design for a State-owned Goulburn Street site featuring one-bedroom and two-bedroom units, along with car parking for residents.

By the end of September, 447 new households had been helped to access housing as part of the Affordable Housing Action Plan.

Tasmania has the highest rate of home ownership in the nation.

Footnote: Tasmania’s population is growing at the fastest rate since early 2011 and net interstate migration is at the highest level in seven years. "People are returning to Tasmania because there are more jobs than ever before, the economy is growing, our lifestyle is second-to-none and they see tremendous opportunities," the Premier, Will Hodgman, said.

Image courtesy of realestate.com

5 December 2017, Edition 190

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Facts about Tasmania

Tasmania

Tasmania is the southernmost state of Australia, located at latitude 40° south and longitude 144° east and separated from the continent by Bass Strait. It is a group of 334 islands, with the main island being 315 km (180 miles) from west to east and 286 km (175 miles) north to south.

Tasmania

Tasmanians are resourceful and innovative people, committed to a continually expanding export sector. In 2012–13, international exports from the state totalled $3.04 billion. USA, China, Taiwan, India, Japan and other Asian countries account for the bulk of exports, with goods and services also exported to Europe and many other regions.

Geography

Tasmania is similar in size to the Republic of Ireland or Sri Lanka. The Tasmanian islands have a combined coastline of more than 3,000 km.

Geography

The main island has a land area of 62,409 sq km (24,096 sq miles) and the minor islands, taken together, total only 6 per cent of the main island’s land area. The biggest islands are Flinders (1,374 sq km/539 sq miles), King, Cape Barren, Bruny and Macquarie Islands.

Geography

About 250km (150 miles) separates Tasmania’s main island from continental Australia. The Kent Group of Islands, one of the most northerly parts of the state, is only 55km (34 miles) from the coast of the Australian continent.

Climate

Twice named ‘Best Temperate Island in the World’ by international travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler, Tasmania has a mild, temperate maritime climate, with four distinct seasons.

Climate

In summer (December to February) the average maximum temperature is 21° Celsius (70° Fahrenheit). In winter (June to August) the average maximum is 12° C (52° F) and the average minimum is 4° C (40° F). Snow often falls in the highlands, but is rarely experienced in more settled areas.

Annual Rainfall

Tasmania’s west coast is one of the wettest places in the world, but the eastern part of the State lives in a rain-shadow. Hobart, the second-driest capital city in Australia, receives about half as much rain as Sydney.

Annual Rainfall

Annual rainfall in the west is 2,400 mm (95 inches), but hardy locals insist there is no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing. If you travel 120 km east to Hobart, you experience a much drier average of 626 mm (24 inches) a year.

Population

The 512,875-strong community spreads itself across the land; less urbanised than the population of any other Australian state. Hobart, the capital city, is home to more than 212,000 people.

Capital City

Hobart nestles at the foot of kunanyi / Mount Wellington (1,270 m / 4,000 ft) and overlooks the Derwent Estuary, where pods of dolphins and migrating whales are sometimes seen from nearby beaches. Surrounded by thickly forested rolling hills, the city is home to the state parliament and the main campus of the University of Tasmania.

Capital City

Its historic centre features Georgian and Regency buildings from colonial times. Hobart is home port for coastal fishing boats, Antarctic expeditions and vessels that fish the Southern Ocean.

Land Formation

Mountain ranges in the south-west date back 1,000 million years. Ancient sediments were deeply buried, folded and heated under enormous pressure to form schists and glistening white quartzites.

Land Formation

In the south-west and central highlands, dolerite caps many mountains, including Precipitous Bluff and Tasmania’s highest peak, Mt Ossa (1617 m / 5300 ft). More than 42 per cent of Tasmania is World Heritage Area, national park and marine or forest reserves.

Flora

Vegetation is diverse, from alpine heathlands and tall open eucalypt forests to areas of temperate rainforests and moorlands, known as buttongrass plains. Many plants are unique to Tasmania and the ancestors of some species grew on the ancient super-continent, Gondwana, before it broke up 50 million years ago.

Flora

Unique native conifers include slow-growing Huon pines, with one specimen on Mt Read estimated to be up to 10,000 years old. Lomatia tasmanica, commonly known as King’s holly, is a self-cloning shrub that may well be the oldest living organism on earth. It was discovered in 1937.

Fauna

Tasmania is the last refuge of several mammals that once roamed the Australian continent. It is the only place to see a Tasmanian devil or eastern quoll (native cat) in the wild and is the best place to see the spotted-tailed quoll (tiger cat), all carnivorous marsupials.

Fauna

The eastern bettong and the Tasmanian pademelon, both now extinct on the Australian continent, may also be observed.

Fauna

The Tasmanian tiger, or thylacine, was Australia’s largest surviving carnivorous marsupial and is a modern day mystery. The last documented thylacine died in captivity in 1936 and although the animal is considered extinct, unsubstantiated sightings persist.

History and Heritage

Aboriginal people have lived in Tasmania for about 35,000 years, since well before the last Ice Age. They were isolated from the Australian continent about 12,000 years ago, when the seas rose to flood low coastal plains and form Bass Strait.

History and Heritage

Descendants of the original people are part of modern Tasmania’s predominantly Anglo-Celtic population.

History and Heritage

Tasmania was originally named Van Dieman’s Land by the Dutch explorer Abel Janszoon Tasman in 1642. The island was settled by the British as a penal colony in 1803 and the original name was associated with the convict era. It was changed to Tasmania when convict transportation stopped in 1853.

Economy

A resourceful island culture has generated leading-edge niche industries, from production of high-speed catamaran ferries and marine equipment to lightning-protection technology.

Economy

Tasmanians produce winches and windlasses for some of the world’s biggest ocean-going pleasure craft; large-scale inflatable evacuation systems and provide specialist outfit-accommodation services to the marine industry.

Economy

The Wooden Boat Centre at Shipwrights Point has re-established the skills and traditions of another age and attracts students from around the world.

Economy

Tasmania is a world leader in natural turf systems for major sporting arenas and in areas of mining technology and environmental management. Its aquaculture industry has developed ground-breaking fish-feeding technology and new packaging.

Economy

Tasmanians sell communications equipment to many navies and their world-class fine timber designers and craftsmen take orders internationally for furniture made from distinctive local timber.

Economy

The state is a natural larder with clean air, unpolluted water and rich soils inviting the production of 100 varieties of specialty cheeses, as well as other dairy products, mouth-watering rock lobsters, oysters, scallops and abalone, Atlantic salmon, beef, premium beers, leatherwood honey, mineral waters, fine chocolates, fresh berry fruits, apples and crisp vegetables.

Economy

Tasmania is a producer of award-winning cool-climate wines, beers, ciders and whiskies. Other export products include essential oils such as lavender, pharmaceutical products and premium wool sought after in Europe and Asia. Hobart is a vital gateway to the Antarctic and a centre for Southern Ocean and polar research.

Economy

The industries in Tasmania which made the greatest contribution to the State’s gross product in 2010–11 in volume terms were: Manufacturing (9.4%), Health care and social assistance (8.2%), Financial and insurance services (7.2%), Ownership of dwellings and Agriculture, forestry and fishing (each 7.1%).

Getting to Tasmania

Travel is easy, whether by air from Sydney or Melbourne, or by sea, with daily sailings of the twin ferries Spirit of Tasmania 1 and 2 each way between Melbourne and Devonport throughout the year.

This site has been produced by the Brand Tasmania Council © 2014

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