Brisbane Olympics could mean gold for property owners


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Property investors are eyeing off Brisbane houses and apartments with most experts expecting the prospect of hosting the 2032 Olympic Games will have a positive effect on residential property prices.

One, PRD chief economist Dr Diaswati Mardiasmo, has predicted that house prices could more than double by 2032 taking median house values above $1.4 million.

Dr Mardiasmo said this growth rate would be consistent with the market's past performance during the G20 summit in 2014 in Brisbane, when dwelling prices surged 112.7 % over 12 years from when the event was announced in 2003 to 2015, a year after it was held.

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Brisbane's new boom

Brisbane is already starting to boom, according to Tyron Hyde, director of quantity surveyor Washington Brown. Brisbane's median dwelling price was $586,142 at June 30, with prices up 13.2% in the past year, according to data from CoreLogic.

"The city was overdue for growth as it's matured in recent years with billions of dollars in infrastructure projects in the pipeline that will be transformational for the city that has seen significant population growth," Hyde says.

Hosting the Olympics will just increase confidence in the city's property market, Hyde adds.

CoreLogic research director Tim Lawless said if the Sydney 2000 Olympics were any indication, Brisbane could be tracking a similarly strong performance.

Between when the Olympics were announced in September 1993 and when they were held in September 2000, Sydney dwelling values jumped by 60%, almost twice the growth recorded across the broader combined capital cities benchmark region, which grew by 34.6 % CoreLogic figures show.

New infrastructure investment

The prospect of billions of dollars of planned infrastructure now being brought forward because of the Games will be a big driver of house prices.

Major infrastructure projects tend to have an uplifting effect on property prices as the projects create jobs, strengthen travel links, and improve amenities such as retail outlets and social venues, Lawless says.

"The obvious candidate for an uplift in demand is Woolloongabba and the surrounding suburbs," Lawless says.

The Gabba ground, located in Woolloongabba, will receive a billion-dollar facelift to become the epicentre of the 2032 Olympics.

The area is already popular with investors, with around two-thirds of the housing stock in and around Woolloongabba being rented, according to Lawless. Woolloongabba units are currently some of the more affordable inner-south regions, with median unit prices sitting at $458,000, almost $100,000 lower than the nearby Kangaroo Point, and $85,000 lower than West End.

Transport is key

Transport infrastructure is the key, says Peter Koulizos, CEO of the Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA).

"It'll be the transport infrastructure that is built that currently doesn't exist to get people to those facilities, in particular, the transport infrastructure from the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast to get them to Brisbane."

If the Sunshine Coast does get an upgraded fixed rail you'll see some exceptional property price rises in that area Koulizos says.

Other areas set to benefit according to the experts would be the proposed sites for athlete villages, earmarked for Hamilton and Robina.

Newington, the site of the Sydney Olympic village, did very well out of games.

"The year after Sydney Olympics 2000 the number of sales in Newington and its surrounding suburbs increased by 58.0%, and median house price increased by 13.4%," said Dr Mardiasmo.

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Money's founding editor Pam Walkley stepped down in early 2015 after more than 15 years at the helm. Before that she was at the Australian Financial Review for 11 years, holding several key roles including news editor, chief of staff and property editor. Pam is now a senior writer for Money.