Cairns June 2017

The month in review: Cairns

By Herron Todd White
June 2017

With new housing construction and development remaining quiet in Cairns, renovation is providing a modicum of activity helping sustain the local building industry. Most renovation appears to be carried out on behalf of existing owners rather than new purchasers or investors and is carried out for a variety of reasons including refurbishment, modernisation and extension. Motivation for renovation also reflects some aversion in the current market to selling and upgrading due to the transaction costs involved on top of the price differential. Renovation for pure profit, with a view to renovating and on-selling is difficult in the current market due to the low profit margins likely to be achieved.

Although renovation is widespread throughout Cairns the more popular areas appear to be the older near-city suburbs such as Parramatta Park, Edge Hill, Manoora, Manunda and Westcourt.

Parramatta Park for instance has experienced significant renovation activity in recent years based on the modernisation of its older style Queenslander dwellings. This also reflects the character precincts in place in much of Parramatta Park which limits demolition and rebuilding activity. By way of example, renovated Queenslanders in Parramatta Park currently command a market range typically of $450,000 to $600,000, compared to a typical market range of $350,000 to $450,000 for unrenovated dwellings.

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