Maryborough has made the state’s top ten for regional suburb growth, though a real estate agent says new data is likely a little too generous.
Price growth in the town outpaced much of central Victoria and has been highlighted on top ten lists in new Real Estate Institute of Victoria figures.
Many regional Victorian property markets had a strong 2018 even as Melbourne’s struggled through a period of low confidence, sluggish auction clearance rates and sales reductions of 20 per cent.
Maryborough’s 6.4 per cent property price growth in the fourth quarter of 2018 was the seventh highest in the state, REIV data suggests. Median house prices jumped 26.6 per cent jump in a year to $250,000.
First National Real Estate Maryborough owner Craig Bell said those numbers were most likely “a little steep”.
“It’s not a big market here so sometimes those kinds of figures can be a little skewed. But we have certainly sensed an increase in values,” he said.
Demand was being driven by investors and by people moving from the western fringes of Melbourne, Mr Bell said, including retirees looking for cheaper property and money in the bank.
It was part of a wider trend, with REIV’s president Robyn Waters saying properties in the inner city were being tightly held and buyers were snapping up cheaper properties on the outer rim and in regional Victoria.
Median sales prices in the suburb of Bendigo reached $475,000 last quarter, up from $385,000 since December 2017.
The area saw some of the biggest gains in greater Bendigo, with Kangaroo Flat median prices rising by $28,000 to $335,000; Epsom’s by $44,000 to $383,000.
Golden Square’s median prices began last December at $317,000, reaching $370,000 in 2018’s third quarter before dropping back to $330,000.
Further afield, Heathcote recorded a $45,000 rise to $330,000 and Castlemaine’s hovered around the $500,000 mark for most of the year before spiking to $600,000, according to REIV.
Cantwell Property Castlemaine director Michael Cantwell said data he relied on suggested median prices had reached $520,000 this year before dropping back to $480,000.
The price was “holding steady” he said, which could continue into the new year.
The REIV expected the state’s prices to remain consistent in the first half of the year as people awaited the outcomes of the federal election and the banking royal commission.
“But things should begin to look up again in the second half of the year,” Ms Waters said.
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