Mining bust sees regional land prices deflating

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Capital city vacant land prices rose by +8.1 per cent over financial year 2016, according to CoreLogic.

In Sydney the median land price rose by +12.5 per cent or nearly $47,000 to $422,500.

And Sydney prices were up by a thumping +15.8 per cent on a per square metre basis.

Meanwhile in Melbourne the median land price rose by +13.9 per cent to $255,000 (although only +6.5 per cent on a square metre basis).

Overall it’s evident that capital city land prices are flying.

Even in Perth the land price rose by +7.4 per cent to a thumping $284,500, while in Hobart the median land prices soared by +20.3 per cent to $160,000.

Only in Adelaide did capital city land prices decline marginally in real terms.

Mining bust

In November 2012 I wrote on the Property Observer website how investors should stick to the capital cities.

It wasn’t entirely clear back then, of course, but as it turned out that quarter proved to be the peak of the mining investment boom, with construction activity declining ever since.


Since the construction phase of the is the labour-intensive phase of the mining boom, it’s been a tough four years for many regional centres (and disastrous for many mining town property markets).

Domain reported today about how parts of Rockhampton have been struggling since 2007, but at least Rocky isn’t a one trick pony.

In truth it’s taken longer than I expected, but as the greatest mining investment boom in 150 years turns to bust median land prices in regional areas are deflating, declining by -1.9 per cent over the past year.

When looked at on a vacant land rate per square metre basis the divergence between capital cities and combined regional Australia is stark.



In fact, as capital city lot sizes shrink the differential of 231 per cent when measured on a per square metre basis is the greatest ever recorded as the capitals continue to outperform.

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Pete Wargent


Pete Wargent is a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Secretary and has a Financial Planning Diploma. He’s achieved financial freedom at the age of 33 - as detailed in his book ‘Get a Financial Grip – A Simple Plan for Financial Freedom’. Pete now manages his investment portfolio, travels and works as a consultant in the finance industry from time to time. Visit his blog

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