Building Boom Replaces Mining Boom
As published in The Real Estate Conversation, 1 June 2015. Click here to view.
Australia is in the midst of a building boom, and more Australians are buying new homes right now. The number of new home sales in April was the highest it has been since 2010, figures from the Housing Industry Association show, and lot sales in Melbourne are up by 41 percent over last year, the highest level of activity since 2010, according to The Urban Development Institute.
“Across our three master-planned projects currently for sale, we’ve seen new home purchases grow consistently since the start of 2015,” says Andrew Buxton, managing director of MAB Corporation which is behind Victoria’s largest fully master-planned, mixed-use community called Merrifield. Merrifield is a joint venture between MAB Corporation and Gibson Property Corporation. Located along Donnybrook Road and bordered by the Hume Freeway and Mickleham Road, the 770-hectare project will be a city in its own right, approximately four times the size of Melbourne’s CBD. It will bring over 5,000 new homes, a 110-hectare waterfront city centre, a 300-hectare business park creating up to 20,000 new jobs in Melbourne’s northern suburbs.
“There’s no doubt that the lift in consumer demand for land and new homes is driven by low interest rates as well as a shift in consumer attitudes towards building their own homes,” says Buxton. “Buyers are looking to design their own home to reflect their lifestyle, whether it be a large family home in Melbourne’s fringe suburbs like University Hill or an apartment in a luxury development like Banksia in NewQuay, and new homes give them the chance to do this.”
Buxton said Merrifield has seen 82 percent of available land sold, and over 1,000 buyers attended the recent launch of the display village. Block sizes at the development range from 294sqm to 751sqm and are priced from $145,000 to $244,900. The display village, at 8 Hawksburn Place (access via Donnybrook Road) in Mickleham, features 34 homes from 18 home builders including Burbank, Metricon and Simonds.