Murray Bridge property is in high demand – what does that mean for you?
House values rose by nearly 10 per cent and rents nearly 20 per cent in 2023. Where does that leave local homeowners, investors and renters?
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More than $123 million worth of residential property has changed hands in Murray Bridge over the past year, making it one of the state’s hottest real estate markets.
House values have gone up by 9.4 per cent in that time, according to industry analysts Corelogic, to a median of $390,000.
The rental market has been hotter still, as Murray Bridge rents increased by 18.1% to a median of $430 per week over the past year.
That was the highest increase anywhere in South Australia, and fifth-highest in regional Australia – great if you’re an investor, not so much if you’re renting.
Corelogic suggested more and more investors, rather than owner-occupiers, were driving the continued growth of property prices across Australia.
“Buyers … may be wealthier, or using profits from resale or some other windfall of capital to help with their purchase,” the firm’s analysts said in their report Best of the Best 2023.
“Alternatively, buyers may be targeting relatively low-priced markets.
“It is reasonable to suggest that both of these factors were in play over the course of 2023.”
Rental increases, meanwhile, could be explained in part by a surge in the number of migrants who had come to Australia since the end of COVID-related border closures.
Rents across the country were likely to rise more slowly in 2024 as immigration levels normalised, interest rates flattened, renters moved into more affordable markets or share houses, and new homes were completed.
However, Proptrack economist Paul Ryan said in another report, that didn’t mean things would get much easier for renters in the near future.
“Despite the easing, vacancy rates have trended down for over three years following strong rental demand and a slowdown in new construction,” he said.
“Conditions will remain tough for those looking to rent in the new year period amid strong demand.”
What does it all mean for local homeowners, investors and renters?
Local property experts Michael Cox, Casey DeMichele and Milaina Gregory, from Raine and Horne Murraylands, said the national trends mirrored what they were seeing in Murray Bridge and surrounds.
Senior property consultant Michael said locals with hopes of buying an investment property, people in their 30s and 40s, were increasingly competing with buyers from Sydney and Melbourne.
“(Interstaters) are happy to pay $500k, that’s loose change for them, and get $450 a week in rent,” he said.
In many cases, such investors bought local properties, sight unseen, on the basis that Murray Bridge was starting to show up on lists of the best places to invest.
“Murray Bridge is still relatively affordable for the facilities we have and our proximity to Adelaide,” sales consultant Casey said.
“For people who might be holding off in hopes of a (value) drop, it might be better to get on sooner rather than later to avoid continuing price rises.”
Although a number of workers had moved into the region recently, property manager Milaina said local families still made up about 80 per cent of rental applicants.
She encouraged anyone thinking of renting in the Murraylands – or investing in property and seeking a tenant – to contact Raine and Horne for a chat.
The team at Raine and Horne Murraylands are here to help you with advice on any real estate matter.
Visit www.raineandhorne.com.au/murraylands, call 8532 3833 or drop into the office at 4 Seventh Street, Murray Bridge.
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