Foreign investors 'resurrected' real estate scene

A leading industry figure has highlighted foreign property investors as the champions of the Gold Coast’s renewed real estate development scene.

Backing the Reserve Bank’s recent statement on the impact of foreign buyers on Australian house prices, chief executive of Ray White Surfers Paradise Group Andrew Bell said overseas purchasers were not pushing up prices across the Gold Coast.

Mr Bell said foreign buyers, particularly Asian, had actually played a key role in the resurrection of the city’s post-GFC development scene.

“It cannot be said that the Asian buyers have driven prices north market-wide. That said, they may push prices up on the odd property if they’re competing for it, as does happen when any two people compete for a property,” he said.

“As the Reserve Bank said recently, their impact on Australian house prices has been overstated, and that echoes our experience on the Gold Coast.

“In fact, the impact of their confidence and subsequent involvement in the Gold Coast market has been to spur on new development,” he added.

Mr Bell said Asian buyers had filled the void when the city had a glut of unsold new apartments following the global financial crisis.

“Much of the Asian activity on the Gold Coast has been the absorption of stock that Australian buyers simply weren’t interested in or were not confident in buying,” he said.

Mr Bell said the Gold Coast’s oversupply of apartments had subsequently diminished, making way for a new development cycle.

“They have ‘oiled the wheel’ for the Gold Coast’s development space,” he said.

“That unsold stock which was sitting around has been absorbed, creating a situation where developers are now encouraged to build here.

“It creates more supply, which provides more choice for buyers.”


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