Real estate confidence for Ballarat

BALLARAT’S housing market has been boosted by the release of the Real Estate Institute of Victoria’s December quarterly report.

The report shows Ballarat recorded a 1.8 per cent increase in median house prices, which the REIV said would further strengthen the local real estate market.

House prices increased from an average of $283,700 in December 2011 to $290,000 in December last year, with a $5000 increase since September 2012.

“Some parts of regional Victoria are displaying strengthening demand as a result of improved Victorian consumer confidence and four interest rate cuts over the past year,” REIV chief executive officer Enzo Raimondo said.

“Overall transaction numbers remain low in historical terms and that may cause some ongoing fluctuations, but if improvements in confidence continue, 2013 will see improved activity and an increase in sales values.”

While Ballarat performed well, both Geelong and Bendigo had higher median house price rises, with Geelong rising 8.1 per cent to $395,000 and Bendigo increasing by 4.7 per cent to $310,000.

However, Ballarat REIV chairman Trevor Booth said the increase was good news for Ballarat and reinstated confidence for owners and investors.

“It emphasises that our market has been stable for a year and that there is consistency in our market,” he said. “It’s good for owners and investors by giving them the confidence that our market is holding strong. “It sets the scene for an ongoing stable market where people can buy with confidence.”

Mr Booth said Ballarat’s outlook on 2013 house prices looked to remain positive over the year.

“Our market has always been consistent and a strong market which looks to continue in 2013,” he said.

“There are suggestions for further interest rate drops which is good news for home owners, investors and first home owners.”

Mr Booth said first home buyers would also benefit with increases to stamp duty concession that formally began from the first of this month.

alicia.thomas@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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