Jonathan Chancellor | 16 October 2012

Southern Highlands' 10% median house price dip

The NSW Southern Highlands median house price dipped 10.5% over the past year, accompanied by home sales activity retreating considerably, according to PRDnationwide research.

The latest median house price in the Wingecarribee local government area eased to $425,000 over the 12 month period to May.

The PRDnationwide Moss Vale agent David Stranger noted despite the 10.5% dip in home values the current median was 12.6% above the lows recorded during the 2008 global financial crisis.

“The growth in sales below $400,000 and the decline in sales toward the top end of the market led to the softer median price,” said Mr Stranger.

He suggested here had been a reduction in the number of first home buyers.

Upgraders, downsizers, and the occasional bargain-seeking investor accounted for most new enquiries.

Figures published in PRDnationwide’s Southern Highlands Property Watch show the number of house sales decreased 8 per cent in the six months to May 2012.

Last month Mr Stranger said prices were expected to remain stable over the next few months.

“With spring commencing and the lead up to Christmas there is some renewed interest in the market with a good choice of listings available.”

The report noted that sales of vacant land in the Southern Highlands followed the same trend as the house market, with a noticeable decline since 2009.

Some 79 lots transacted during the May period, representing a 44% drop from the May period in 2011.

Most of the vacant lots transacted in Renwick, a Landcom subdivision located east of the Mittagong town centre.

Typical blocks were selling at Renwick for around $195,000. When completed, the master-planned community will comprise 600 lots.

The report noted medium density dwellings (units, townhouses) were in demand from the region’s retiree and ‘tree change’ population with volumes for medium density dwellings significantly higher than during the trough of the financial crisis.

“The supply of ‘over 55’ developments has increased over the past five years, offering greater choices to those nearing retirement age,” he said especially south of the Bowral town centre.

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