Mecone and UDIA NSW announces the Residential Development Review

RDR coverAccurate, relevant and up-to-date property information is vital in the decision-making process of property development and land use planning. Unfortunately, this information is distributed in piecemeal format through a myriad of various government departments and often presented in user-unfriendly verbose textual or tabular formats.

Mecone has joined with UDIA NSW to create the Residential Development Review – a new publication reporting on the state of Sydney’s housing market that seeks to address the difficulty of access to this information. It brings together statistical and spatial data from various government authorities and presents them in a clear and graphical manner so that housing development data is simple to find, quick to interpret and easy to understand.

This Residential Development Review assists in identifying both the strongest and weakest areas of growth and demand, for both short-term and longer-term trends, in the Sydney metropolitan area, thus allowing investors, developers and other interested parties to make informed decisions relating to property development.

The Residential Development Review has reveals new insights and trends in Sydney’s housing market at numerous levels of detail. It shows how in recent years, the proportion of apartments in relation to all dwellings is increasing, how apartments provide the best sale price to rental return ratios and further, how the City of Sydney and Botany Bay are the council areas where the largest sale price to rental return ratios are found.

The Review’s data shows how over the past several years, multi-unit dwelling approvals have not only been increasing in number, but also in terms of the proportion of all dwelling approvals. At the end of 2011, multi-unit dwellings accounted for 60% of all dwelling approvals; this had increased to 66% for the quarter ending September 2015.

Analysis of the sale and rental price figures of the Review shows that, for returns on investment based on rental rates as a percentage of purchase price, apartments are a better investment in all but two council areas (Hawkesbury and Camden). Of the apartment properties, two best council area to invest in are Sydney and Botany Bay, with the median rent for a two-bedroom apartment returning 4.6% of the median property sale price in one year.

A time delay between dwelling approvals and completions is also apparent, with peaks in dwelling approvals appearing in the dwelling completions approximately 12 months later. Additionally, the discrepancy between approvals and completions is revealed, with generally only approximately 60% of approvals having been completed in the period covered by the Review.

While as expected, dwelling approval in council areas in inner Sydney are predominately multi-unit dwellings and those in outer Sydney are predominated detached, located on the edge of Sydney, Hornsby defies the geographical trend. Unlike other outer Sydney councils that are predominately building detached dwellings, 84% of Hornsby’s dwelling approvals are multi-unit dwellings. This can be attributed to numerous transit-oriented developments along Hornsby’s train lines.
The Review’s focus on the greenfields development capacity shows that both the South West Growth Centre and North West Growth Centres have had minimal development, with both Growth Centres well under 10% developed. This is in part due to land fragmentation and land being zoned for development, but not having services made available. Geographical analysis also shows that in globo land prices in the South West Growth Centre are significantly lower than the North West Growth Centre, with the median price in the North West more than double the South West.

The Residential Development Review can be downloaded from UDIA NSW’s website at:

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