3 Trends Investors Must Know About Brisbane Apartments

Today we look at 3 trends for Brisbane apartments: 

  1. Brisbane’s apartment sales
  2. Last year’s apartment buyer profile/origins
  3. The current state of new apartment supply

1. Sale volumes

Calendar years Settled sales Yet to settle Total sales
2013 7,482 750 8,232
2014 10,696 1,550 12,246
2015 11,302 2,350 13,652
2016 9,784 3,500 13,284
2017 7,465 1,100 8,565


Product type Total sold (2017) % sales
One bedroom 1,713 20%
Two bedrooms 5,824 68%
Three bedrooms 942 11%
Four+ bedrooms 86 1%
Total 8,565 100%

Sales volumes are falling. 

The median value of a new apartment in Brisbane was $585,000 in 2017, which is down 5.0% on the year before.

There were 8,565 apartment sales in Brisbane last year, of which most were either one, two or three bedroom product.

2. Buyer profile/origins

Buyer profile/origins Resales (2017) New sales (2017)
Buyer profile
Investor 65% 85%
Owner resident 35% 15%
Buyer origins
Brisbane region 60% 15%
Other SEQld 10% 5%
Other Qld 5% 5%
New South Wales 10% 35%
Other interstate 5% 15%
Overseas 10% 25%

New apartment product mostly sells to investors.

Local buyers dominate apartment resales but the majority of new apartment buyers live interstate and increasingly, overseas.

3. Status of new apartment projects

Project status No. of projects No. of apartments
Recently built (last 2 years) 65 11,500
Under construction (most completed in 2018) 43 10,000
Development approval & possible over next 2 to 3 years, but unlikely 49 10,350
Development application, concept phase, deferred, site for sale or abandoned, most very unlikely over next 3 to 5 years 96 27,650
Total 253 59,500

There are 253 recently completed or ‘active’ new major apartment projects in Brisbane.

This equates to some 59,500 apartments. 

Some scary stuff especially given the underlying need to build about 3,000 new apartments per year (revisit yesterday’s missive).  37835969_l

But most of this new apartment stock is likely to be delayed or may not proceed at all.

Already we are seeing apartment sites being converted to office and other land uses.

Yet there is still pain to come, with 10,000 apartments, under construction, and most likely to be completed during 2018.

This equates to three to four years supply.

In simple terms, the cranes on Brisbane’s apartment skyline will be helping build other things, or moving somewhere else, once these 10,000 apartments currently under construction are squared away.


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Michael Matusik


Michael is director of independent property advisory Matusik Property Insights. He is independent, perceptive and to the point; has helped over 550 new residential developments come to fruition and writes his insightful Matusik Missive

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