APARTMENT BOOM ONLY JUST HITTING ITS STRIDES

APARTMENT BOOM ONLY JUST HITTING ITS STRIDES

THE apartment sales boom has reached a new peak on the Gold Coast and according to one property researcher the trend isn't going to fade any time soon.

Lynda Campbell, senior consultant with researcher Urbis, says the Gold Coast apartment market continues to break records after recording 1041 sales in the first three quarters of this year, well ahead of the 825 sales achieved throughout 2014.

According to the latest Urbis Gold Coast Apartment Essentials report, new apartment sales surged more than 30 per cent in the three months to September. Total sales hit 416 across 47 projects, up from 314 three months earlier.

"The Gold Coast new apartment market is thriving," says Campbell, who expects 2016 to be even stronger.

"The September quarter recorded several new project launches which saw 461 apartments become available for purchase. With quarterly sales of 416, there is a healthy balance between supply and demand."

Campbell says seven new projects were launched in the last quarter and she expects 22 more to launch over the next six months. This will bring another 2165 apartments to the market.

Among the big projects to make their mark is the first stage of Ralan Group's $1.4 billion Ruby development which is set to transform the Paradise Resort in Surfers Paradise.

Ralan this week reported that it had sold out of the 241 apartments and townhouses in the 30-level first stage, at an average price of $700,000, which is above expectations.

"Based on the current sales rate and increasing demand, it's likely 2016 will eclipse 2015," says Campbell.

"The latest report shows that sales this quarter increased by 253 compared to the corresponding quarter for 2014 which recorded a total of 163 sales, an increase of more than 150 per cent.

Campbell says Gold Coast sales have been driven by increased supply and the affordability balance between CBD markets falling in the Gold Coast's favour.

The Gold Coast's median apartment price in June was $360,000, well below Sydney at $650,000, and lower than Melbourne ($470,000) and Brisbane ($429,000).

"The Gold Coast has welcomed 23 new apartment project launches during the past 12 months," says Campbell.

"This is driving a competitive market for developers who have become more savvy and sophisticated in their designs and amenity offerings, giving buyers more choice."

Most of the sales activity occurred in the golden triangle of the Gold Coast apartment market between Southport, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach where supply is greatest.

Urbis says that, at the end of September, nine towers had a pending supply of 909 apartments in this central property precinct.

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