The residential prestige property market in the Illawarra has performed well throughout 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic, an expert says.
"As property prices have risen over the years, so has the prestige price point," Chris McKenna, residential team leader for property valuation and advisory company Herron Todd White said.
"When we talk about beachside homes, the Illawarra appears to have a price ceiling of around $4 million.
"However, this price point has recently been breached with a sale in Woodland Avenue, Thirroul for $4.125 million, the house having been listed for sale for over a year and finally finding the right buyer, indicating the strength of this market in our region at the moment."
Mr McKenna said throughout the year so far, there has been sales of coastal properties over the $3 million mark in Thirroul (two), Kiama (two), Stanwell Park, Clifton, Minnamurra and Gerroa.
Mr McKenna said for those looking for a little more land, the rural residential prestige market has also been active in 2020.
The year kicked off with a $3.84 million sale in Russell Vale of a four-bedroom, three-bathroom homestead on 8.9 hectares.
The $4 million mark was breached for a 20-hectare Calderwood property comprising three houses and significant ancillary improvements including stables, which sold in April for $4.6 million.
A 75-hectare property in Kangaroo Valley comprising three dwellings fetched $5,362,500, and Rose Valley recorded two separate sales of $5.665 million and $6.05 million.
However, Mr McKenna told the Mercury that agents are reporting a shortage of stock across the board in the Illawarra, and the prestige property market is no different.
"Despite recent activity and buyer interest, there are a very limited number of prestige properties currently on the market with no current beachside listings in Wollongong's northern suburbs over $3.5 million," he said.
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Despite the disruption associated with COVID-19, Wollongong's industrial property market has largely held course throughout the year to date, Herron Todd White director Scott Russell says.
"Sales have been limited, however we see this as being more reflective of a supply issue opposed to a disconnect between vendors' and purchasers' expectations," Mr Russell said.
"Prices have held firm and there continues to be interest from owner-occupiers and private investors.
"The southern fringe of Wollongong continues to be sought after and the market appears to be absorbing the high volume of strata warehouse units being developed across the region."
While leasing activity stalled during the March and April lockdown, there has since been renewed tenant interest and steady leasing activity.
Rents have held firm, although incentives to counter the current economic uncertainty are typically required to secure a tenant.
"Low interest rates are driving this demand while the region is well and truly on the map for businesses relocating from Sydney," Mr Russell said.
"Agents have also reported fielding numerous inquiries from large manufacturers looking to establish local operations as part of a re-shaped COVID-19 enforced business continuity plan."
Mr Russell said the Illawarra is well-placed to position itself as a heavy industrial hub within the state. However, he said unlocking suitable sites for development and attracting government and corporate investment into rail infrastructure needs to be addressed to realise this potential.
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