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Regional Western Australia’s top price growth locations revealed

Bunbury was the top performing regional centre in WA over the December 2022 quarter, according to new data from the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia.

Bunbury’s median house price rose 2.3 per cent to $420,000 for the quarter, and 9.1 per cent for the year.

REIWA President Joe White said interest in Bunbury had been focused on older homes that were close to the beach.

“What has been selling lately are older homes on good-sized blocks near the beach, such as in Usher, Withers and Carey Park,” he said.

“These are cheaper areas and offer good value – it’s a case of the worst house in the best street.

“These properties offer opportunities to renovate or build close to the coast, in areas that are likely to see some rejuvenation in future.”

He said a strong local economy had also been driving growth in the city.

“Overall, Bunbury is a robust area offering a range of employment opportunities,” he said.

While the latest figures saw Bunbury overtake Busselton for quarterly growth, the latter’s strong annual price growth ensured it retained the title of top annual performer.

Prices in Busselton rose 1.5 per cent to $660,000 during the three months ending December 31 and were up 20 per cent for the year.

Karratha (where values were up 1.9 per cent) and Port Hedland (up 1.8 per cent) were the next best performers during the quarter.

Regional centre 
 
Median house sale price 
 
Three-month change 
 
12-month change 
 
Albany 
 
$450,000 
 
+1.1% 
 
+8.4%
 
Broome 
 
$650,000 
 
+0.0% 
 
+7.3%
 
Bunbury 
 
$420,000 
 
+2.3% 
 
+9.1%
 
Busselton 
 
$660,000 
 
+1.5% 
 
+20.0%
 
Esperance 
 
$400,000 
 
+0.0% 
 
+2.6%
 
Geraldton 
 
$370,000 
 
-1.3% 
 
+2.2%
 
Kalgoorlie 
 
$335,000 
 
+1.5% 
 
+2.8%
 
Karratha 
 
$530,000 
 
+1.9% 
 
+5.9%
 
Port Hedland 
 
$465,000 
 
+1.8% 
 
+5.7%
 
WA regional centre median price growth. Source: REIWA

Mr White said most regions showed either moderate price growth or remained stable over the quarter.

“Like Perth, the regions are showing resilience in the face of interest rate rises,” Mr White said.

He said that migration into the state was expected to be felt in the regions too.

“It won’t just be Perth that benefits from the push to attract workers from the UK, some migrants will move to the regions, which will support those property markets as well,” he said.

Regional centre 
 
Median weekly rent price 
 
Three-month change 
 
12-month change 
 
Albany 
 
$390 
 
-1.3%
 
+0.0%
 
Broome 
 
$895 
 
+19.3%
 
+37.7%
 
Bunbury 
 
$490
 
-1.0%
 
+16.7%
 
Busselton 
 
$640 
 
+10.3% 
 
+16.4%
 
Esperance 
 
$330 
 
-5.7% 
 
-9.6%
 
Geraldton 
 
$380 
 
-1.9% 
 
+11.8%
 
Kalgoorlie 
 
$550 
 
+5.8% 
 
+14.6%
 
Karratha 
 
$800 
 
+6.7% 
 
+14.3%
 
Port Hedland 
 
$900 
 
+12.9% 
 
+5.9%
 
WA regional centre median rent growth. Source: REIWA

State Government investment in ports would also benefit regional centres like Geraldton, Bunbury and Esperance would also boost demand for properties, Mr White predicted.

“Infrastructure upgrades like this are extremely beneficial for regional areas – look at the effect the Busselton airport redevelopment had on Busselton, Dunsborough, Margaret River and Bunbury,” he said.

“Investment in ports, particularly those that export a variety of goods, will have a flow-on effect to local economies and employment, to continue the population growth in regional centres.”

Rental performance for the quarter was more mixed, with five centres recording an increase in median rents and four recording a decrease.

The largest increase was in Broome (where rents rose by 19.3 per cent) followed by Port Hedland (up 12.9 per cent).

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