Geelong is expanding into a ‘new economy’… but is this just the beginning?
Capital growth over the past 12 months has increased as much as 16 percent in Geelong; according to CoreLogic figures. The city is transitioning from a factory town with a strong manufacturing base, into a ‘new economy’ city with a broad range of industries and a growing population. Geelong’s economy is one of Australia’s most diversified; boasting major capabilities in high-tech and knowledge-based sectors, such as health, research, bio-technology, and education. According to the Domain Group’s latest State of the Market Report, Geelong now outranks most local government areas in metropolitan Melbourne in terms of growth in property sales. At this point, it is predicted that this surge is still part of the earlier stages of Geelong’s growth cycle. Historically, property booms in Australia have lasted up to three years before beginning to taper off; and with the surge in business expansions, government infrastructure spending, and property development, Geelong’s solid performance might only just be the beginning. Geelong is the only regional Victorian hub that has recorded double-digit house price growth in the past year, new data has shown. Experts believe the housing market has flourished off the back of Melbourne’s soaring house prices. The port city's widespread appeal has been generated through prospective buyers not having to compromise on amenities, infrastructure or access to the city. Buyers are looking to get a foothold on the property ladder whilst maintaining comfort and convenience. It has also been revealed that Geelong has recorded the highest auction clearance rate across the nation, matching a May 2017 rate of 92.31%. This is the first time the clearance rate has peaked over the 90% mark (since May), although the volume of recorded auction sales has increased significantly. Population growth and the inflow of new residents and interstate investors has pushed house prices in Geelong up, but the city’s median house price remains cheaper than Melbourne (at $400,000), rendering it as a more attractive city to live in. Property development is another factor that is driving sales activity. Geelong’s council alone has approved at least 1300 new dwellings every year since 1997; the average has now risen to 2300 since 2012. With Greater Geelong’s population of about 240,000, forecast to hit 320,000 by 2036; there is no indication of development numbers slowing down. Improved road and rail infrastructure commitments by state and federal governments will also likely drive price growth and sales activity, in the future. With major sources of interest from developers and builders, and with investors taking stronger returns and lower buy-ins… this could very well be the beginning of a major property market boom down under!