Regional Australia’s housing boom is showing no signs of abating with Singleton’s real estate agents reporting demand for both houses for sale and rental properties, are at an all-time high.
Requests for Singleton properties in the $400,000 to $500,000, traditionally the domain of the first home buyer, are growing with experts predicting the trend to continue through 2021.
The pandemic meant Australians are looking for a different lifestyle, built around less stress and more space. While those retiring have often looked for this, it’s happening at an earlier stage in life, often with young families.
Working from home has also allowed the freedom to work from anywhere and for many people, their choices lead them to Singleton.
Lindy Harris, Principal of One Agency in Singleton said the median house price in Singleton has now lifted to $412,000, a rise of 11.4% compared to April 2020. Units haven’t fared quite as well, with the median price rising 4% to $223,750 over the same time period.
However, it’s important to note that unit prices have underperformed house prices nationally. In Sydney, the average unit price actually fell -0.2% over 2020.
“We’ve seen record sales of high-end properties, especially with people now working from home and wanting to have that extra space for their families. There have been 14 sales in the last 12 months predominantly of two-acre lots in the $800,000 to $900,000 on a five-kilometre radius from Singleton,” Ms Harris said.
“I’ve been selling for 21 years in this town and I’ve never seen such a high demand like this. It’s also a flow-on effect from first home buyers to Sydneysiders who are selling their $2 million properties in Sydney and buying acreage out here,” Ms Harris said.
Angela Payne, Sales Coordinator from One Agency Singleton said the properties on their books currently extend from Singleton to North Rothbury however they don’t remain on the books long at all.
“Often people hear through word of mouth that a property will be sold and we have inquiries right from that stage. We have many offers for houses in the $400,000 to $500,000 range around Singleton,” Ms Payne said.
The rental market is also seeing a glut of properties with many rentals in Singleton attracting 30 applications for one property.
“It’s hard for those seeking rental properties. Demand certainly outstrips supply. The kinds of things we look out for when searching for tenants is to see whether they’ve had steady employment, what their rental history is and whether they’ve been a good tenant in the past,” Ms Payne said.
Peter Dunn, owner of Peter Dunn real estate in Singleton, said investors are pouring money into properties rather than leaving it in the bank.
“Here in Singleton we usually run the opposite to Sydney and Newcastle but right now we’re all running together with all three housing market locations booming,” Mr Dunn said.
“Rental demand is also high and investors are buying properties to rent out. I had an investor out this week, she’s 76 but she doesn’t see her money in the bank doing anything for her. The mining community is stable, there’s volatility in the stock market and some Sydneysiders are looking to relocate here so from all sides, our housing market is surging in Singleton,” he said.