The Smartline Report – August Edition

The month in review: Cairns

By Herron Todd White
August 2015

Within Cairns current building costs start with the basic level dwelling of a project style lowset home on a level lot, rendered masonry block, Colorbond roof, 3- to 4-bedrooms, 2-bathrooms, garage and driveway. This home would have a living area of 120 to 150 square metres, a total building area including patio and garage of 180 to 220 square metres and a typical building cost of around $1,100 to $1,300 per square metre across the entire dwelling. With land prices for a standard residential lot starting at about $125,000 to $165,000 depending on location, new entry level housing in Cairns generally comes in at between $350,000 and $400,000.

A mid-level house in Cairns would be larger (180 square metres of living plus patio and garage to give a total area of 240 square metres), better finished, have split system air conditioning and stone benchtops and some choice provided on fitout. It would have a cost to build typically of around $300,000, or $1,200 to $1,400 per square metre across the entire dwelling. Coupled with an allotment price in the mid-quality areas of about $180,000 to $220,000 this places the total cost of a new mid-market style house at about the $475,000 to $525,000 mark.

High end architectural homes in Cairns would have building costs of $1,500 and above per square metre of living area with fees and consultants charges excluded from this rate.

The general feeling is that the market is reasonably competitive with a number of larger operators covering the project home market, making it difficult for smaller players to compete due to their lack of administration and cost control. Building prices have not increased greatly in the past five to seven years, mainly due to the stage of the market cycle.

Please note that information in this publication is subject to change without notice. Smartline assumes no responsibility for any errors, omissions or mistakes in this document. © Smartline Home Loans P/L 1999 – 2015. Australian Credit Licence Number 385325


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DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is correct at the time of publishing and is subject to change. It is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Smartline recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Smartline recommends that you seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.