Episode #43: My Queensland Road Trip to Uncover More Treasure

Over the last couple of weeks I have been travelling in to Regional Queensland. After flying in to Brisbane and picking up a hire car I made my way to Sugar Cane country to Bundaberg, the home of Bundaberg Rum. Sugar Cane contributes around $137 million to the local economy according to QLD Economic Advocacy Solutions.

Bundaberg is at the Southern end of the Great Barrier Reef. It has a diverse economy based around agriculture, tourism, health.

You can still buy homes in the high $200,000’s.

The Bundaberg region is responsible for 70% of Australia’s Sweet Potato production, 50% of Australia’s Macadamia Nuts and is the largest passionfruit growing region in Australia.

I next headed up the Bruce Highway to Rockhampton which is considered the “Beef Capital of Australia.” Just like Bundaberg you can still buy properties under $300,000 in places like Allenstown, West Rockhampton and Berserker and rental yields in some suburbs are over 6%. Rental vacancies are well below 1%.

There are a number of projects of significance and these include the $600 million Capricorn Integrated Resort the $1.3 billion Clarke Creek Wind, Solar and Battery Power Station the $495 million lower Fitzroy River Weir project and $1 billion in infrastructure projects.

The energy and resources sector contributes $1.5 billion to Rockhampton’s Gross Regional Product and employs 8000 people.

According to Demographer Bernard Salt Rockhampton is set to become one of the top 20 biggest cities in Australia by 2050.

After leaving Rockhampton I headed on to Gladstone which is definitely making a comeback after the big downturn around 2012-2013 where supply of new dwellings far exceeded demand. Well it’s fair to say that “glut” of properties has well and truly been soaked up and rents are also on the rise with weekly rents trending upwards for the past 4 years.

SQM Research revealed that the median rent of $400 is 18% higher than in 2019 and 13% higher than a year ago.

In Gladstone we are seeing demand on the rise due to people relocating to for employment and lifestyle opportunities.

Some of the highlights for Gladstone include the Renewable Energy Industrial Precinct, the $1.5 billion Hummock Hill Island Tourism Development, the $1.2 billion Surat Basin Rail project thw $1.4 billion Riverstone Rise Master Planned Community and the $760 million Port of Gladstone Channel Duplication.

The big difference this time round for Gladstone is it’s not reliant on the Gas projects but has a number of smaller projects to support the economy and this diversification is what gives us confidence around the future for Gladstone and it’s property market.

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