Bendigo a better buy

Bendigo Weekly | Bendigo Weekly | 26-Oct-2017

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THE incentive to buy a house in Bendigo is set to become greater with price growth estimated to be constrained at five per cent over three years compared to 10.6 per cent in Melbourne.

But a report titled the QBE Australian Housing Outlook 2017-2020 points to Geelong and Ballarat as more desirable residential centres for potential commuters because they are closer to Victoria’s capital.

Ballarat’s housing market, in particular, has outstripped Bendigo’s for growth over the past four years, but median house prices in both cities are similar.

By 2020 after a cumulative six per cent growth, Ballarat’s median house price will be $360,000, while Bendigo’s is estimated to be $350,000.

The report said Ballarat would benefit from large infrastructure projects, the likes of which led to a surge in Bendigo’s property market until March this year when a high mark median house price of $350,000 was reached.

By that month, stage one of the new Bendigo hospital was complete.

“The construction of the Bendigo hospital has been one of the key employment drivers in recent years,” the QBE report said.

“Its impact on the local economy was significant, improving unemployment from 7.6 per cent in March 2015 to 4.5 per cent in March 2017.

“Median house prices have also steadily risen in light of greater dwelling demand.

“Bendigo’s vacancy rate remains tight, below the two per cent mark, which suggests that rental dwelling demand remains strong.

“With the completion of the first phase of the Bendigo hospital, the next phase consists of smaller scale works (and) there are also no upcoming projects of comparable size to maintain local economic growth and job creation.

“Without any significant economic drivers emerging, house price growth in the Bendigo market is expected to be limited at three per cent in 2017-18.

“Growth is then expected to be flat with the median house price at $350,000 in June 2020 representing a total five per cent increase.”

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