Through the year to 1 December, the median dwelling price in Brisbane went up 11.9% according to CoreLogic. Houses were selling for about $870,000 on average, now only about 7.5% below that of Melbourne.

Unlike Australia’s second largest city, there have also so far been few signs of the Brisbane market slowing down. If the current rate of growth continues, before too long it will be cheaper to buy a house in Melbourne than in Brisbane.

Louis Christopher of SQM Research is one who expects prices in Brisbane will keep on rising in 2024

“Brisbane…[is] expected to record price rises [in 2024]…driven by a tailwind of a recovering Chinese economy which is anticipated to see strong demand for base commodities such as iron ore,” he explained.

Whether it’s mining jobs, the 2032 Olympic games or the Queensland beaches that are drawing migrants, Brisbane is set for a prolonged period of population growth.

A report from consulting firm RSM for Brisbane City Council estimated 350,000 people will emigrate to Brisbane within the decade, both internally and from abroad. Then Deputy Premier Stephen Miles said Brisbane needs more housing than it ever has before.

“We need a plan that makes sure homes are delivered where and when they need to be,” he said.

For existing property though, undersupply likely means strong price growth in the next few years; SQM reports the number of Brisbane property listings had fallen 12.6% in the 12 months to November.

The national average was a 2.2% rise, with Canberra listings up 24.4%; Hobart, 22.1%; Melbourne, 4.2%; and Sydney, 3.5%.

We’ve talked to several experts within the real estate industry to pick out spots in Brisbane that could be particularly lucrative, in the near and long term.


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Median price and rents from Realestate.com.au, correct as of December '23.

Bulimba (4171)

  • Median price: $1,850,000 for houses, $800,000 for units

  • Median rent: $950 pw for houses, $630 for units

Our first three picks are among Brisbane’s traditionally most expensive. We’ll get to the more obscure, budget suburbs, but with demand for Brisbane property only set to accelerate in the coming years, we might look back with amazement at the days when property in suburbs like Bulimba were regularly selling for under $2 million.

In its end of year report for 2023, CoreLogic ranked Bulimba the seventh-most expensive suburb for houses in Brisbane, based on sales over the 12 months to September ‘23 with a median selling price of about $1.9 million.

For reference, in Melbourne, Armadale was seventh (median price of $2.7 million to September '23), while the seventh-most expensive Sydney suburb was Mosman ($5.3 million).

While this is in no way a direct comparison, you could be forgiven for reading the tea leaves and deducing the Brisbane blue-chip market still has a ways to mature.

For similar reasons, Bulimba made its way onto REA's Hot 100 suburbs for 2024, commentators calling it “ridiculously affordable” for the lifestyle on offer.

Hamilton (4007)

  • Median price: $1,900,000 for houses, $530,000 for units

  • Median rent: $950 pw for houses, $580 for units

Directly across the Brisbane river from Bulimba is Hamilton, with a similar story, and no bridge connecting the two.

Again, the median house price is below $2 million, despite its reputation for harbouring Brisbane’s old money.

The average unit in Hamilton sold for $530,000 last year, which is actually below the Brisbane median.

Lloyd Edge, Founder and Director of Aus Property Professionals, expects Hamilton to continue to appeal to those who can afford it.

“Hamilton offers a blend of lifestyle and investment appeal, with its Queenslander homes and proximity to the CBD attracting a diverse range of buyers," Mr Edge told Savings.com.au.

Bulimba.jpg

The river view from Bulimba

New Farm (4005)

  • Median price: $2,625,000 for houses, $790,000 for units

  • Median rent: $1,100 pw for houses, $530 for units

Rounding out the three premium Brisbane suburbs we’ve kicked off with is New Farm, which the majority of Brisbane residents will know for its eponymous park.

It’s also one of the oldest suburbs in Brisbane, with nearly 20 heritage listed sites including several houses built in the 19th century, if you’re into that.

Mr Edge says New Farm is another area with inherent liveability that should mean demand stays strong.

“The unique blend of residential charm and riverside appeal makes New Farm a highly sought-after location in Brisbane," he said.

Nathan (4111)

  • Median price: $1,065,581 (House estimate from Aus Property Professionals, not enough data on REA).

  • Median rent: $395 pw for units (not enough data for house rent estimate).

Even long term Brisbane residents might not be familiar with Nathan, with a population in the 2021 census of just over 1,000. It’s about 10 km south of the Brisbane CBD, and home to the Queensland Sport and Athletics Centre (QSAC), Toohey Forest Conservation Park and the Griffith University Nathan campus.

Between these landmarks, Nathan is sparsely populated due to larger blocks and bush reserves, but Mr Edge says there may well be gems among the property that is there.

“Nathan's significant growth and its strategic location in the city's south make it a standout suburb for investors seeking long-term value," he said.

Deception Bay (4508)

  • Median price: $595,000 for houses, $390,000 for units

  • Median rent: $490 pw for houses, $400 for units

According to CoreLogic, there were at least 10 suburbs within the Brisbane LGA that saw house prices go up by at least 20% last year.

Areas like Macgregor, Salisbury, Wishart and Gordon Park all saw the median price fly up well past $1 million, so plenty of potential buyers might be feeling like they missed the boat.

However, Samuel Powell, lead analyst at Hello Haus, says buyers can now look to the Moreton Bay region, the LGA north of Brisbane, for cut-price Brisbane property.

"Moreton Bay...is a rapidly growing area," Mr Powell told Savings.com.au.

"[The population] expected to reach 700,000 by 2041, driven by factors like affordable housing, proximity to major employment hubs, and accessibility to Brisbane and the airport.

"The region's appeal extends to coastal towns, making it attractive to first-time buyers, families, and investors."

Mr Powell said Deception Bay, about 32 kilometres north of the CBD, is one of the Moreton Bay suburbs particularly worthy of buyers' attention.

The vacancy rate there is currently just 0.86%, while the average rental yield is 4.32%.

Clontarf (4019)

  • Median price: $720,000 for houses, $480,000 for units

  • Median rent: $550 pw for houses, $397 for units

Mr Powell's other tip for Moreton Bay suburbs was Clontarf, in the south-west of the Redcliffe peninsula. Clontarf has some of the most popular beaches in the area, as well as waterfront parks and a golf club. Vacancy rates there are around 1.3%, with a gross rental yield on houses of about 3.91%. 

Murrumba Downs (4053)

  • Median price: $820,000 for houses, $435,000 for units

  • Median rent: $600 for houses, $460 for units

Finally, Murrumba Downs is another Moreton Bay suburb that also featured prominently in the PRD research 'Affordable and Liveable Property Guide' for Brisbane in the second half of 2023.

PRD Chief Economist Dr Asti Mardiasmo highlighted both houses and units in Murrumba Downs in the guide, both of which saw strong price growth throughout 2023.

With vacancy rates at 0.7% for both units and houses, low unemployment compared to nearby suburbs and a 4.1% rental yield for houses, Murrumba Downs looks well placed to benefit from a surge of Brisbane buyers looking northwards.

Cover image by Pixabay on Pexels, Bulimba image from Eddie Bugajewski on Unsplash





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