The Gold Coast is glittering again  

After languishing behind the major cities for years, something is up on the Gold Coast – house prices.

In their June report, nationwide property valuers Herron Todd White found, “the Gold Coast has put the GFC behind it with a recovering market.

“Prices are well off the bottom across all residential property categories and land values on the Gold Coast are reported to have increased by 10.7% over the past year.”

So what is driving the renaissance?

According to HTW, the economic mix has largely turned in the Gold Coast’s favour, led by higher population growth.

All of these new residents had to find a home somewhere, but residential construction had come a near complete halt during the GFC. As the population continued to grow, the surplus of housing stock was soaked up, sparking a rebound in prices.

Tourism, a key employer and money generator, is also on the rebound thanks to a falling dollar making Aussie holidays cheaper for overseas and local tourists alike.

Gold Coast tourism is on the rebound thanks to a falling Aussie dollar.

Palm BeachVilla units in Palm Beach sell for about $500,000 – $600,000.

To find out more about the revival and where the best deals are for home buyers, we spoke with Lucy Cole of Lucy Cole Prestige a key player in the local market for 20 years.

“We certainly weathered a drop off during the GFC, but the winning of the Commonwealth Games and the building of much needed infrastructure, like the Gold-LinQ tram, has sparked a revival,” she says.

“There has also been a surge in interest from buyers from Singapore, New Zealand and China which has helped move the market up.”

What to buy – first home buyers

For first time buyers with a typical budget of $500,000 – $600,000, Cole suggests looking beyond the central areas of the coast as this market has already moved ahead strongly.

“With this sort of budget, buyers wanting a three-bedroom family home should look in areas like Nerang and Pacific Pines.

“The other option would be to head south towards an area like Palm Beachwhere you should be able to find a nice villa for this budget.”

What to buy – up to $1 million

BroadbeachAstute buyers can find an apartment for $1 million in Broadbeach.

For those with a more solid budget, Cole sees good opportunities for the astute home buyer.

“An example of what to look for is an apartment we sold recently for $850,000 in the Sentinel Building which had 178 sqm of living space.

“At around a million dollars, good apartments do pop up in quality buildings in areas like BroadbeachMain Beach or a little back from the main strip in Surfers Paradise.

“At this price you should be aiming for two-bedroom, two-bath unit with 90 -120 sqm of living and beach views and typically these come with cars spaces and lock up storage.

The market has a history of bursts of activity followed by flat periods.

“The other option in this range is to look at an older style house a little back from the main centres in areas like Benowa. These will usually require work to be brought up to a reasonable level of presentation, but we do see houses in excellent positions come on to the market from time to time.”

Buyers new to south east Queensland should be conscious that this market does have a history of bursts of activity followed by flat periods.

But buyers who tap into local knowledge and are rigorous in property selection can be well rewarded by the right home on the Gold Coast.