BATHURST has received a huge tick of approval as one of three regional centres in NSW regarded as a premier location for property investment.
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The feature story in the latest November issue of Your Investment Property Magazine (YIPM) focuses on the bush and what it describes as powerhouse destinations.
Across the nation there are 18 regional hot spots highlighted, but in this state only Bathurst, Dubbo and Maitland get a mention as worthy contenders.
The information in the feature was compiled by the magazine’s team of experts and used statistics supplied by RP Data July 2011, taking into account fundamentals regarded as fundamentals which they believe acts as triggers for property price growth.
Editor of YIPM Nila Sweeney told the Western Advocate the Bathurst economy was the complete package. She said the article notes that Bathurst has consistently delivered solid returns for investors and has lived up to its reputation as an investment hot spot, thanks to its vibrant and diverse local economy.
“Demand for housing comes mostly from the education sector: Bathurst hosts the Charles Sturt University headquarters as well as two TAFE campuses. As a whole, the sector employs just over 12 per cent of Bathurst’s population,” Ms Sweeney said.
“The economy is also supported by robust retail, manufacturing and health care sectors. Being in close proximity to Orange is also a massive advantage as construction on the Cadia East gold mine expansion gets underway.
“The $2 billion Newcrest Cadia East mine project is one of the largest underground mining operations in Australia and is expected to pump more than $1bn into the local and regional economies.
“The project is forecast to create 1300 jobs during construction and around 880 operational jobs, over a 20-year span.”
Ms Sweeney said Bathurst, being only a short drive away, is well positioned to take advantage of this flurry of activity in the Orange area. She noted Bathurst is already one of the fastest growing regions in NSW, with a population growth of 2.19 per cent over the past 12 months, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
According to the article, housing affordability is still within investors’ grasp, with the median house price sitting at $272,500.
“Recent figures from Housing NSW point to an active rental market, with median weekly rents increasing by 15 per cent over the last year for two-bedroom homes,” the article says. “With around a third of Bathurst’s population renting, investors enjoy a solid 5.4 per cent gross rental yields.
“West Bathurst produces the highest return, at 6.4 per cent. There is virtually no vacant rental property in the area.
“SQM Research estimates the vacancy rate to be just 0.9 per cent, amongst the lowest ranked of all regional districts in NSW.”
House prices have been growing by an average of 8.29 per cent each year over the past 10 years, according to RP Data, and Matt Clifton, co-principal of Raine and Horne Bathurst, expects that trend to continue.
“The Bathurst market has been strong for the last two or three years, and our sales volumes have remained high during this time,” Mr Clifton said.
“The area’s affordable housing and the marketing campaign by the local government to promote regional living is contributing to the strength of the local property market,” he says.
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