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Interstate Buyers On The Rise, Searching High and Low For Gold Coast Property

By Chelsea Gates

INTERSTATE buyer activity on the Gold Coast stepped up a notch in 2018, and not all of it was driven by cashed-up baby boomers.

According to the Gold Coast largest real estate agency Ray White Surfers Paradise Group (RWSP) interstate buyers from both the top and bottom end of the market were out in force as the Gold Coast began priming as a major second-tier market for property buyers nationally during the year.

“We saw a remarkable surge of interstate buyers on the Gold Coast in 2018,” said RWSP CEO Andrew Bell.

“These were largely made up of two groups, namely young couples who can’t afford properties interstate and baby boomers either retiring or nearing retirement looking to financially set themselves up for the future.”

Mr Bell, who is gearing up for RWSP’s largest auction program of the year, The Event in January, said the interstate buyer trend has been growing steadily for the past couple of years.

He notes that the rising trend of younger couples relocating is an encouraging reflection of the economic strength of the city.

“The Gold Coast has progressed rapidly as a result of the Commonwealth Games and over $20 billion worth of public, institutional and private investment into the city,” he said.

“For young people, they can now find meaningful well-paid jobs as a result of the Gold Coast producing one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.

“These are jobs well beyond the old traditional roles in tourism and construction and include a raft of new and highly regarded industries such as education, health, and research.”

Mr Bell said incoming Gold Coast buyers were railing against the high cost of living in bigger cities, whether that be due to higher rents, mortgage payments and transport costs.

“For many, it is all of the above but most importantly that they simply would take a lifetime to save a deposit to buy a home and enjoy the security of owning your own property,” he said.

“The Gold Coast offers some of the most affordable real estate in a modern progressive city and so we are the standout choice for relocation.”

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows the interstate trend has been under way for some time with Sydney losing more than 18,000 people to interstate and intrastate migration in 2016-17.

Mr Bell said more retired and semi-retired baby boomers are cashing in on the latest price cycle in their home markets and looking for a comfort change on the Gold Coast.

“Many are selling up with a handsome payout, giving them the opportunity of buying into a market such as the Gold Coast at often less than 50 per cent of the value of their properties in Sydney,” Mr Bell said.

“A strong move towards large apartments, villas and townhouses gives them the freedom, at will, to travel extensively throughout Australia and overseas.

“The cash left over between the sale of their interstate properties and their purchase on the Gold Coast gives them significant cash that can be used to enjoy their retirement or semi-retirement years.”

RWSP is expecting another strong influx of property buyers from interstate to descend on the Gold Coast this holiday period in the lead-up to The Event, the group’s highly anticipated annual auction program.

“Every January we find a high proportion of those inspecting Gold Coast properties are the migrants from the southern states,” he said.

“They’re up here for holidays and, to capitalise on the spare time they enjoy, they do get out to look for that perfect property to buy.

“January also sees a lot of expats return to Australia to visit family and friends over our Christmas-summer break, so we do also tend to see a spike in expat activity during December and January.”

The Event, run in conjunction with the Gold Coast Home & Living Exo, is being held at RACV Royal Pines Resort on January 28 from 10am.

The Gold Coast Home & Living Expo will feature a range of discounted products and services designed to assist with buying or selling a home.

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