Homebuyers search for property is getting more expensive, new research shows. Search activity in Geelong shows more buyers are looking at higher price points. More than one-third of buyers contained their search to homes priced between $500,000 and $750,000, the REA Insights data shows this year. But the number searching below $500,000 dropped by nearly half in 2021 to 17 per cent of buyers.
And searches for homes from $750,000 to $1 million rose to 23 per cent, while homes priced up $1.5 million doubled to 13 per cent. Hodges, said the data reflected rising prices in the Geelong real estate market. He said the increase at the higher end reflected the rise in buyers now looking to live in Geelong. “There has certainly be an increase in the amount of people looking to relocate here and make it their home as opposed to an investment,” he said.
“The amount of people that have no affiliation with Geelong — it’s now a destination point for people wanting to change their life — and the amount of people that have ties who are returning, is nothing short of extraordinary.”
Buxton said more people had to spend more than $1 million to buy a good home. “$1 million a couple of years ago would buy you a house with a pool on a big block in the top three or four suburbs in Geelong. Now it just buys you a good home on a good block,” he said. The city’s median house price reached $665,000 in May, a rise of 13.7 per cent (or $80,000) after 12 months. There are 25 suburbs with a median house price between $500,000 and $750,000, while another 24 have a median house price above $750,000, including towns on the Bellarine Peninsula and the Surf Coast. Agents said the most popular price band from $500,000 to $750,000 offered homes to the widest range of buying groups — first and second-home buyers, investors and super funds. Rising house prices and record low interest rates were fanning interest in this bracket.
Buxton said the low cash rate was encouraging more people into the property market. “The biggest growth would have been Baby Boomers making a decision to buy an investment property once the cash rate reduced,” he said. Mr Riddle said over-50s who would usually each interest on bank deposits were being forced into shares or property for a return. A lot were from Melbourne, he said.
“We’ve seen an increase in the amount of investors in the 50-plus age group who are now saying I need to buy an affordable home as an investment property.” The drop in searches below $500,000 people have an expectation that you don’t get much under that price bracket. There are eight Geelong suburbs with a median house price below $500,000.