A thriving economy based on diverse business sectors and strong exports are driving continued employment and population growth, and that has formed the basis for a stable, high-potential property market that investors diversifying into Australia can’t afford to ignore.
Brisbane City Council values the Greater Brisbane economy at AUD146 billion, representing growth of 8.2% over a two-year period. There are now 114,213 businesses based within the Brisbane LGA, and more than 70,000 more within the total Greater Brisbane area.
This growth is supported by a diverse metropolitan economy. No single sector represents more than 14% of Brisbane’s total employment, and this variety provides a stable foundation for further growth.
Key sectors are healthcare and social assistance, professional, scientific and technical services, retail trade, education and training, and public administration and safety.
Further economic success has been built around the strength of the city’s export sector, with tourism (AUD5.21 billion in the year to June 2015) and education (AUD3.8 billion in 2014) now major export categories for the city.
Global trade is also a prime growth sector for Brisbane, driven by the ongoing success of Australia TradeCoast. This expansive project has created thousands of jobs and nurtured Brisbane’s status as a key hub for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, which in 2014/15 recorded exports worth AUD15.1 billion.
This success is driving strong employment growth and very positive projections. There are currently 1,162,000 people employed in the Greater Brisbane area, and this is set to rise to 1,532,200 by 2036, which would represent a growth rate of 31.9%.
A significant number of these new jobs are set to be created in four key districts, and connectivity to these areas will be a key factor in identifying new residential property investment opportunities in the city.
Businesses and government agencies within the Brisbane CBD employed 156,545 workers in 2011, and new forecasts from the National Institute of Economic and Industry Research (NIEIR) expect this figure to climb to 222,178 by 2031, an increase of 41.9%. Across the Brisbane River in the popular West End/South Brisbane district, massive employment growth of 86.9% is expected over the same period as 58,941 new jobs are created.
The Newstead and Fortitude Valley regeneration area that has been a focus of our Brisbane investment strategy so far will also continue to create new opportunities, with a total of 39,649 jobs expected in the area by 2031. The fourth such opportunity area is Woolloongabba/Greenslopes/Coorparoo, a growing district to the south of the city centre. With NIEIR forecasting 22,985 new jobs by 2031 – a 79.5% employment growth rate – this area is set to become another key investment district for property investors.
Such new employment opportunities in Brisbane are drawing new residents to the city, driving strong population growth. Brisbane Council’s latest population figures puts the number of residents in the Brisbane metropolitan area at 2.2 million, and projections expect this figure to rise above 3.3 million by 2036, which would represent growth of more than 50%.
The Brisbane property market continues to perform strongly and supports our decision to prioritise investment in the city. Sales activity has risen across all price points, with transactions rising 13% between Q2 and Q3 2015 alone according to the latest report from the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ).
The same REIQ report has the city’s median unit price rising 1.2% over the same period to reach AUD430,000. Meanwhile the city’s rental market remains very stable, boasting an impressively low vacancy rate of just 2.6% in November last year.
We’re still very much at the beginning of Brisbane’s price growth story, and signs remain very positive that investors entering the market now will enjoy excellent capital appreciation on their assets in the coming years.