Albany: buyers hotspot

By Michael Roberts | posted on June 25, 2020

ALBANY real estate agents say they’ve seen an influx of Perth buyers looking to secure property in the Great Southern in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Elders Residential Sales Manager Blair Scott said home hunters from the city were looking for a safe haven away from the hustle and bustle of densely-populated areas.

“We’ve got the ‘after COVID syndrome’ where we are starting to see a lot of people from Perth who are looking for some- where safe,” he said.
“Either as somewhere to live or where they can escape to.”

Ray White Principal Graham Walker said his team had also received a flood of Perth investors who wanted to escape the busy city centres.

“We’ve had a lot, more than I’ve seen in many years,” he said.

“We are getting enquiries from interstate as well. We had two people from Sydney last week who want to come back to Albany.”

With the introduction of the Federal Government’s HomeBuilder scheme and the State Government’s Building Bonus grant, Mr Scott said there had been a rush on buying up vacant lots.

“There have been a huge number of first homebuyers running around buying up blocks,” he said.

“It’s been absolutely insane. Everything is disappearing.

“I think we are going to see a lot of concrete pads around next year waiting for tradies to get there.”

With government incentives netting you close to $70,000 to build your first home, Mr Scott said there could be a drop off in values on the lower end of the market.

“People who were going to go into an established house, a lot of those are now going to build,” he said.

“For the same money they can get something brand new.

“But it’s only a limited timeframe. It seems like a big deal now but it will all smooth itself out. We might see a little bit of a drop.”

Rather than introduce short-term sweeteners, Mr Walker echoed calls from the Real Estate Institute of WA to abolish stamp duty.

Stamp duty is a government tax payable when you buy land or property. In WA, stamp duty is calculated on the market value of the property.

“Stamp duty is something they should have tackled in 2000,” Mr Walker said.

“That was supposed to be part of the package of bringing in GST. Stamp duties were to be abolished.

“It’s a very soft income for the government and they are going to be reluctant to ever remove it.

“It’s a massive impost on people.”