SQM Research Weekly Newsletter
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SQM Research Residential Newsletter - 
Tuesday 28 July 2020
Property Explorer
Research Reports
Distressed Properties Report
Funds Research
Boom and Bust 2020 Report
Black Dragon's
Words for the Week

“Suckers think that you cure greed with money, addiction with substances, expert problems with experts, banking with bankers, economics with economists, and debt crises with debt spending.” 

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Real Estate Realities 

Interest in Australian real estate from Hong Kong continues to boom

People from Hong Kong pushed to breaking point by China’s strengthening grip on the former British territory are increasingly seeking out Australia as a potential new home, new data reveals.

Amid the introduction of a draconian new security law by Beijing, and the Morrison Government’s offer of Australian work rights with a path to citizenship for residents in the territory, interest in Aussie property from Hong Kong has spiked.

The political unrest, which dramatically escalated in June last year, boosted interest in Australian real estate by as much as 34 per cent year-on-year, on Australia’s leading property platform

Due to the latest developments, search activity from Hong Kong has peaked by as much as double that again.

Interest in property in Victoria has lifted by 25%, year-on-year. In NSW over the same time frame it has grown by 36%, in Queensland by 38% and in Adelaide by 65%.


What's Happening with Regional Rental Vacancy Rates?

By Louis Christopher, CEO

If you haven't been sleeping under a rock, you will very likely be well aware of our outright bearishness towards the Sydney and Melbourne housing markets right now (and to a lesser extent, Brisbane).

This radio interview I did with ABC’s Radio National neatly sums up the issues for these markets.  And as also tweeted out last week, we have reiterated that our original scenario (released at the beginning of April) for an up to 30% decline in Melbourne and Sydney markets, following the dire new budget estimates, is very much still on the cards.
But today I actually wanted to point out another new trend we are seeing in the numbers.  And that is what is happening in the housing markets of regional Australia including localities that are just outside the capital cities.  These are just anecdotes only but there are many of these indeed which strongly suggest to me that our regional housing markets are not just stable, they are on the rise - perhaps for differing reasons.
Let’s consider this chart which is rental vacancy rates for the
Blue Mountains which is technically still part of Greater Sydney according to the ABS.

Since the start of Covid-19, rental vacancy rates have plummeted from 3.2% to 1.1%. 
It’s the same situation for Sydney’s
Central Coast – vacancy rates dropped from 2.7% in Dec-19 to 1.2% in Jun-20.

And Wollongong – dropped from 2.6% in Dec-19 to 1.4% in June.

The story is a little more mixed around Melbourne.  For example, there hasn’t been a move towards Geelong increasing from 3.0% in Dec-19 to 3.5% in June.

But there certainly has been for the Mornington Peninsula – dropping from 1.7% in Dec-19 to 1.1% in June.

And a similar pattern can be seen just outside Brisbane.  Consider what we call the Beenleigh Corridor (the region between Brisbane and the Gold Coast) – dropping from 3.2% in Dec-19 to 1.4% in June.

And consider Ipswich -

Or Northern Brisbane which includes Caboolture -

Now as a contrast and a reminder, let’s have a look at the inner city areas once more.

Region Dec 2019
Vacancy Rate
June 2020
Vacancy Rate
Sydney CBD 4.8% 12.7%
Melbourne CBD 3.2% 6.7%
Brisbane CBD 6.0% 9.2%

Yep, it is still a very ugly situation for existing landlords. But this shift isn’t just occurring on the city fringes. It is also happening in areas well outside the cities.
Lets’ consider North Coast NSW:

Or the central Tablelands of NSW:

Or Central Coast Queensland:

Or indeed Northern South Australia:

In short, when trolling through our regions, I cannot find one in regional Australia that isn’t recording the same pattern as these ones.
So what does this mean? Well, obviously there has been an unprecedented and sudden shift towards regional living. No doubt this has been triggered by Coronavirus and the discovery that working remotely is now very achievable for many businesses, especially ‘white collar’ services.
The question in my mind is, will this shift be a permanent one or will it reverse back once we have defeated Coronavirus?  
I suspect there will be some reversal back. But I also suspect the shift is in part, permanent. I think for employees and businesses alike there have been benefits unlocked that will encourage many to keep the current state of working affairs going well after Coronavirus. For starters there is the relative affordability factor of living away from the very costly city living. Housing prices are much more affordable, rents are cheaper and traffic is minimal. Many enjoy the additional privacy of not living on top of their neighbours. For businesses, the immediate opportunity is the reduced floor space requirement through not having mostly everyone centralised in one office. That will mean a significant saving on office rents. Then of course there are the environmental and sustainability aspects to regional living.
Finally, if there is a more permanent shift to regional living, there will also be employment opportunities, especially in regional centres. Australia has long suffered from its economy being anchored to its largest capital cities.  Any diversification to the regional centres could very well be a good thing, long term for this country.

AUCTION LISTINGS* for week ending 2 August 2020



Rest of Week




Rest of Week


Sydney 510 112   All NSW 582 153 Auctions in NSW 
Melbourne* 282 75   All VIC 303 78 Auctions in VIC 
Brisbane 69 44   All QLD 106 105 Auctions in QLD 
Perth 5 6   All WA 7 10 Auctions in WA 
Adelaide 41 15   All SA 43 17 Auctions in SA 
Canberra 43 13   All ACT 43 13 Auctions in ACT 
Darwin 1 2   All NT 1 2 Auctions in NT 
Hobart 0 0   All TAS 1 0 Auctions in TAS

*Note: The above counts of auctions represent most recent known auction dates for the coming week.  As at 8 July, Melbourne auctions are back on-line.

AUCTION RESULTS for week ending 26 July 2020

Full individual auction results can be found on our website: 



   74 Jingili Terrace, Jingili NT 0810

Situated in one of the most sought after, family friendly neighbourhood of Jingili in Northern Territory, is this solidly constructed home that would make a great family home as well as an investment potential.
The home’s well-planned layout includes 3 good sized bedrooms with built-in robes; open plan lounge and dining area; refurbished Kitchen and separate laundry.  A 4th bedroom with its own kitchen and bathroom makes an ideal teenagers retreat. The home sits on an 868 sqm block and has two large undercover alfresco areas, a carport and established gardens.

The home is ready to move into or can be further renovated to suit your needs.  It is on sale after lovingly cherished by one family for over 40 years.  The home is well-located, close to several schools including Casuarina Secondary College and Jingili Primary school and is also close to Jingili shops and Casuarina shopping centre.
The home was first offered for sale in July 2018 at $629,000 and last sold for $430,000 10 years ago in March 2010.

Asking prices in this postcode have declined by 2.7% over the month for houses but units have increased by 2.0%.  Houses in this area currently have a price range of $495,000 to $625,000.
This postcode has seen house
Asking rents decrease by 4.1% over the month but rents for 3-bedroom houses and units have been steadily increasing and have now increased by 1.5% and 0.9% respectively. A Gross Rental Yield of 4.1% can be achieved for houses and 5.6% for units.  Vacancy Rate has dropped to 1.4% in June from a pre-Covid-19 rate of 2.9% in January 2020.
This home presents an easy-care family lifestyle or investment and will be a popular home for all prospective purchasers.
Darwin currently has some good buying opportunities and it could be worth exploring this market. 

Keep monitoring this market’s growth with SQM Research’s free property data. Also consider the SQM Property Explorer product for more in-depth data and property price estimator.

Louis Christopher's 2020 Housing Boom & Bust Report has now been released and is available for $59.95!

The Housing Boom and Bust report is accurate, impartial and detailed. Best of all it is priced so that EVERYONE from real estate agents, financial planners to regular mums and dads can access it at just $59.95. 

Key features of the 2020 Boom & Bust report include:

  • Louis Christopher's personal take on the markets 
  • Capital city forecasts 
  • Main drivers of demand and supply at present and going forward 
  • All leading indicators such as stock on market, vacancy rates etc
  • All the possible scenarios that could play out next year 
  • Nearly every city and regional postcode covered re: property stats plus ratings outlook

If you are a real estate professional or a serious residential property investor, you will not want to miss this report!

If you are interested in where the market is heading on a national level, then this is the report for you from one of the most
accurate housing market forecaster in the country. 

Click here to purchase now!


Did you know that SQM Research doesn’t only provide residential property data, we also provide research on all asset classes.  We have data and analytics on over 10,000 funds in Australia.  To find out more and to subscribe to our Fund Data tool click here.

If you would like to subscribe to our Ratings Newsletter, click here.  The newsletter provides regular updates on all funds including ratings changes and media releases, and valuable Insights into the point of view of our analysts on a variety of ratings research related topics.  And it’s completely free!


SQM Research Weekly Asking Prices Index
Week ending: 28 Jul 2020 Asking Price Chg on
  prev wk
 Rolling month
% chg
 12 month
% chg
Sydney  All Houses  1,380.0 -8.5  0.1%  10.4% 
All Units 683.5 -1.8  -1.3%  -2.3% 
Melbourne  All Houses 1,020.9 -1.3  -0.6%  9.1% 
All Units 570.0 -0.3  0.2%  5.8% 
Brisbane  All Houses 643.7 -0.7  -0.2%  4.4% 
All Units 377.5 -1.2  -0.2%  1.6% 
Perth  All Houses 671.9 1.0  -0.1%  3.3% 
All Units 379.6 0.9  -0.3%  -0.9% 
Adelaide  All Houses 526.1 -0.5  -0.4%  2.3% 
All Units 308.6 -1.4  -0.2%  2.9% 
Canberra  All Houses 816.7 1.1  -1.7%  1.6% 
All Units 444.7 -0.2  0.7%  2.5% 
Darwin  All Houses 574.8 0.5  -0.8%  -2.6% 
All Units 345.4 0.6  -0.1%  -2.7% 
Hobart  All Houses 575.3 1.9  0.6%  11.7% 
All Units 372.4 -1.2  1.1%  21.9% 
National  All Houses 603.7 0.9  0.2%  7.0% 
All Units 394.8 0.3  0.3%  4.4% 
Cap City Average  All Houses 984.9 -6.6  -0.4%  7.2% 
All Units 566.7 -0.7  -0.8%  0.2% 

Next update: 4 Aug 2020

SQM Research Weekly Rents Index
Week ending: 28 Jul 2020     Rent       Chg on
 prev wk
  Rolling month
% chg
  12 month
% chg
Sydney  All Houses   638.1 0.9  -0.3%  -7.2% 
All Units 467.6 -1.6  -1.1%  -6.5% 
Melbourne  All Houses 523.7 -0.7  -1.3%  -0.7% 
All Units 398.6 -1.6  -1.1%  -5.5% 
Brisbane  All Houses 467.4 -1.4  0.1%  1.2% 
All Units 380.0 0.0  -0.1%  1.6% 
Perth  All Houses 469.0 4.0  3.4%  8.5% 
All Units 351.6 1.4  0.2%  3.4% 
Adelaide  All Houses 412.4 0.6  0.2%  3.5% 
All Units 317.8 0.2  0.1%  1.9% 
Canberra  All Houses 619.4 0.6  -0.5%  0.9% 
All Units 473.2 1.8  1.0%  2.8% 
Darwin  All Houses 485.2 -4.2  0.2%  -6.5% 
All Units 363.4 -8.4  2.2%  -2.1% 
Hobart  All Houses 438.0 3.0  0.3%  -2.3% 
All Units 382.1 2.9  2.1%  -4.0% 
National  All Houses 455.0 3.0  2.5%  3.4% 
All Units 367.0 0.0 -0.5%  0.0%
Cap City Average   All Houses 538.0 0.0 0.0% -1.6% 
All Units 420.0 -1.0  -0.7%  -4.3% 

Next update: 4 Aug 2020

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