Well-heeled buyers can’t get enough of the water, but in some Australian locations an absolute waterfront address boosts a property’s value by a whopping 95 per cent, according to new research.
Knight Frank’s Australian Prime Waterfront Index has found that for prime properties across the country – that is, the top 5 per cent of the market – those on the water are worth on average 65 per cent more than comparable homes inland.
The value-add is most prevalent in Sydney, where a waterfront location added a 94.9 per cent premium in sales over the third quarter of 2019, up from 89.3 per cent over the previous year.
The second market in terms of value-add was the Gold Coast with 66.5 per cent, followed by Perth at 53.6 per cent, and Brisbane at 45.1 per cent.
In the Super Prime category – property sold above $10 million in Sydney and Melbourne, and $7 million across the rest of the country – 42 per cent of sales between January and the end of September were for absolute waterfront properties, with 46 per cent of those having exclusive access to maritime facilities such as a mooring, pontoon or jetty.
The Mosman-based principal of Simeon Property Richard Simeon said he’d definitely seen an increase in demand for absolute waterfront property over the past year, with top-end buyers stymied by a lack of available stock.
“Genuine, high-quality, deep waterfront property with boating facilities are our most valued luxury properties on the market,” Mr Simeon said.
“Over the past 12 months, the supply has definitely reduced. And the demand is there but we have nothing to show them.
“The most genuine buyers remain frustrated that they’ve got no opportunity to purchase.”
Some buyers were after homes they could knock down and redevelop, he said, while other would pay whatever was necessary for the right property.
Mr Simeon said in Mosman, the cheapest land value for a deepwater site was around $10 million, and typically about $10 million to $15 million would be spent on building a trophy home.
A high-end waterfront home would start at $18 million, with the asking price only going up from there.
Looking north, Gold Coast-based Jesse Willcox from Willcox Estate agents said they’d also seen “massive activity” – “from interstate and international buyers, and that is driving the local market,” Mr Willcox explained, adding that his properties were spending much less time on the market, and lifestyle was a key factor for those looking to buy in.
“What the Gold Coast offers in lifestyle is second to none,” he added, noting that premium property buyers often wanted a turn-key experience, and that meant having a top-notch marina or pontoon already attached to the home.
Chris Litfin, Knight Frank director and head of residential project marketing – Queensland, said being close to the water was one of the main reasons people moved to the Gold Coast.
“Being on the absolute oceanfront – the surf beach – is the most sought-after on the Gold Coast and is the most expensive.”
The sentiment was echoed by Michelle Ciesielski, Knight Frank partner and head of residential research, who said homes on the Brisbane River were “some of the most desirable housing in the capital city”.