Report: Regional Qld leads nation for interstate buyer activity

The ‘regional renaissance’ brought on by Covid-19 may have slowed, but Queensland continues to lead the country for internal migration.

The PropTrack Regional Australia 2022 Report, released today, found Queensland – both metro and regional – remained the most popular destination for internal migrants, with more people moving to the state than anywhere else in the country.

“The Sunshine State has experienced an unprecedented influx of new residents, with a net gain of 107,549 people in the five years before the 2021 Census,” the report said.

“When comparing to data from previous Censuses, a steady increase in the proportion of interstate migrants into both the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast can be seen.

“More generally, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast suburbs account for more than half of the top 20 suburbs in regional Australia with the most potential buyers per listing and almost the entirety of the top 10.

“But that’s not where demand has most increased over the past 12 months.”

The biggest growth in demand per listing can be found in the Darling Downs-Maranoa (+51%), Cairns (+25%), Toowoomba (+17%) and Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday (+17%).

Aerial view of Bluewater Marina and the luxury Bluewater waterfront housing estate at Trinity Park
Aerial view of Bluewater Marina and the luxury Bluewater waterfront housing estate at Trinity Park, on the northern beaches of Cairns. Picture: Brendan Radke

Nationally, the biggest increase in demand per listing was almost entirely dominated by Queensland suburbs, including Cranley, Dalby, White Rock, Kingaroy, Hollywell, Pelican Waters, Bargara, Whitsundays and Birtinya.

The only interstate suburb to make the top 10 list for demand per listing growth was Muswellbrook in NSW.

PropTrack Report
PropTrack Regional Australia 2022 Report

“Queensland is still home to four of the top 10 regions where demand has increased the most in the 12 months to October 2022,” the report said.

The regions with the biggest falls in demand per listing were all in NSW and Victoria.

PropTrack senior economist and report author, Eleanor Creagh, said the pandemic, multiple lockdowns and more time spent at home led many to reassess their housing wants and needs.

“Housing markets in regional Australia thrived as people sought more space and more affordable homes,” she said.

“Remote working opportunities and preference shifts drove strong population growth in regional areas at the expense of the capitals, predominantly Sydney and Melbourne.”

But Ms Creagh said that as restrictions eased and interest rates rose rapidly, regional prices were expected to continue to decline, albeit at a slower pace compared to the capital cities.

In regional Queensland, the biggest declines from the peak have been in some of the most inflated markets, but demand for more affordable regions was holding up.

“They remain buoyed by shifting lifestyle priorities, migration trends and affordability advantages that are still in play,” Ms Creagh said.

PropTrack Report
PropTrack Regional Australia 2022 Report

The report said that regional Queensland was the top searched location for interstate property seekers in regional Australia, with almost a third (31%) of all searches coming from interstate property seekers.

Suburbs on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast made up eight of the top 10 most in demand regional suburbs, led by Peregian Beach (3 times the number of potential buyers per listing compared to a typical regional Queensland suburb) and Currumbin (2.9 times).

2022 Report
PropTrack Regional Australia 2022 Report

Demand per listing data showed that the top 10 suburbs for buyers during the October quarter were Peregian Beach, Currumbin, Broadbeach Waters, Sunshine Beach, Tugun, Bilinga, Sunrise Beach and Elanora.

There were only two suburbs outside of Queensland that made the top 10 list – West Woolloongong (Illawarra) and Newtown (Geelong).

“Despite population flows slowing, almost half (42%) of interstate searches are into regional Queensland,” the report said.

The report also revealed the regions were prices are still rising, with four of those in Queensland – Toowoomba, Wide Bay, Cairns and Townsville.

Regional Suburbs
PropTrack Regional Australia 2022 Report

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