Kiama has come to prominence again nationally, with a report from property research group Propertyology saying our Local Government Area (LGA) has the third most expensive median house price in Australia.
The top billing in the list goes to the Byron Bay LGA, with a median price of $987,500 last December. Then comes Sydney at $950,000, followed by Kiama LGA at $910,000.
The ranking shows us outshining other LGAs close to capital cities, such as Wollongong (No. 7 $755,000), Noosa (No. 8 $735,000), the Gold Coast (No. 14 $632,500), and Newcastle (No. 15 $628,500).
It is the first time the ranking, which compares the median house price for the eight capital cities and every regional LGA, has been compiled.
“Over the 20 years ending December 2018, Kiama’s median house price has an average annual increase of 7.7 per cent, identical to Sydney,” says Property-ology’s Head of Research, Simon Pressley.
“Kiama’s property market standing is one of literally dozens of examples that prove that population mass and population growth rates are far from the biggest influence on property prices.”
The growth in median house price for Kiama LGA in the three years to December 2018 has been 26.4 per cent (using figures from CoreLogic).
This is after the down turn that happened in the market, both here and nationally, mid-last year when the median price came down from $950,000. The February median price is $900,000.
The Principal of First National Coast & Country, Terry Digger, believes there is a problem with grouping together all of the sales data for an LGA into one figure and then comparing it to one figure for the each of the whole of the capital cities.
“It is a bit misleading, as anyone who has looked at what you get for your money in Sydney will agree,” he says.
“In such a small area, it is easy for the figure to be distorted by really big sales.
“For example, the median house price in Gerroa in December was $1,450,000, yet in Kiama Downs it was $882,000.”
He says that prices have come down 10 to 12 per cent from their peak, due largely to banks tightening their lending policies and uncertainty over the build up to the election.
“We are still seeing a good demand for quality properties, with the adjustment making properties more affordable.
“Even after taking the downturn into account, vendors are benefitting from 47 per cent growth in prices over the last five years.”
Gerringong’s figures will now have to incorporate the $11.3 million sale of Robbie Ingham’s 40ha waterfront property, formerly part of the Weir farm.