Ballarat train improvements key to city's growth.

State government plans to upgrade the Ballarat rail service.
State government plans to upgrade the Ballarat rail service.

Ballarat’s property market is ready to boom if Public Transport Victoria can reduce train times to Melbourne to less than an hour.

The city’s property market has remained stable when compared to Melbourne, but prices will rise if commuting options to the state capital improved.

New estates at Lucas and Delacombe at west Ballarat make the city well prepared to deal with sudden population growth.

Ray White Real Estate Ballarat director Phillip Lee said the housing market would be assisted by a quicker train journey to Melbourne.

“If we can get a train in Ballarat under one hour house prices will take off dramatically,” he said.

“Ballarat has a lot of land on the west side of the city, so we have a plentiful supply of housing and we are well set-up to accommodate for growth.

“Getting that train will assist the Ballarat real estate market.”

If we can get a train in Ballarat under one hour house prices will take off dramatically

Ray White Real Estate Ballarat director Phillip Lee

The state government said in January that construction to duplicate 17 kilometres of track between Melton and Deer Park west would not begin for another year.

However the government also said more services will be added to the Ballarat line from mid-year.

Ballarat was granted 10 additional off-peak services in the most recent timetable release.

Mr Lee said Ballarat had started to see an increase in real estate activity.

“Melbourne tends to have more of a boom, then more of a price crash, where Ballarat is more of a gentle stable market that does not get the massive booms, and therefore does not get the massive crashes,” he said.

“In Ballarat we tend to get a leveling out in a more stable market where prices increase steadily – and if the market conditions change – prices level out rather than crash.

“Ballarat is a safer place to invest than Melbourne.”

Some economists have predicted a collapse of the Melbourne and Sydney property markets as price records continue to be broken in the two cities.

The median house price for Ballarat was $320,000 in December last year, which is lower than regional Victoria’s median price of $358,000.

Where house prices have increased, such as at Cardigan and Lake Gardens, a moderate 2-3 per cent rise was recorded.

Real Estate Institute of Victoria chief executive Gil King said the Ballarat property market was increasingly becoming more attractive to buyers priced out of the Melbourne market.

“Growth in metropolitan Melbourne is being driven by strong buyer demand, population increases and low stock on market, which has boosted house prices across the city.”

“The REIV has not seen any slowing in demand for property in Melbourne with a number of auction records falling this year as well as strong private sale markets.”