Tag Archives: Cairns

Homebuyer confidence rises. 2013 outlook is promising

5 Years from now

The number of Australians who believe it’s a good time to buy a home surged 11.5 per cent over the December quarter, reaching highs not seen in three years.

CommSec chief economist Craig James says the Westpac/Melbourne Institute’s latest index shows more people are keen to park their money in bricks and mortar.

“Real estate was regarded as the second wisest place to put new savings, with that reading just below seven-year highs,” James says.

Housing finance commitments slid slightly by 0.2 per cent in October, new data shows, but total home lending for the year is up four per cent.                                   Loans for land blocks rose by 17.5 per cent over 2012, which is the strongest pace of growth in three years.

“All the pointers suggest there are better times ahead for the housing market, representing good news for builders, tradespeople, material suppliers and a raft of retailers.”

On the wider economy, James says there’s good momentum moving into the New Year. In particular, forecasts for the resources sector show Australia is set to “reap extraordinary earnings” over the coming year. James says the outlook is far brighter than the “doom and gloom school would have you believe”.

Export volumes are predicted to increase substantially and the reason for a forecast drop in export values is due to the drop in commodities prices.        While general consumer sentiment fell by 0.2 points to 100 on the index, loans to buy new or used cars hit a record 1.23 billion in October.

James says the drop is disappointing at first glance but digging deeper shows “sharp divisions across the country” are to blame.  “In short, conditions are very mixed and how you feel depends on where you live and your housing status,” he says.

He believes the data suggests the Reserve Bank may opt to stay on the interest rate sidelines in the early part of 2013, preferring to see how the economy responds to rate cuts.

Source: Australian Property Investor


Operation Rudolf 2012 Saturday 15 December


For those of you who are unsure of what it is, it’s a massive Christmas cavalcade from the city to Palm Cove.

The time of year when the emergency services take the time to spread some Christmas cheer and visit the northern beaches in a cavalcade of lights and sirens

Approx Time Schedule:

15:05       The Esplanade Cairns
16:00      Machans Beach Esplanade                                                                          16:30      Holloways Beach                                                                                     17:10       Yorkeys Knob                                                                                           18:10       Vasey Esp Trinity Beach                                                                       18:30       Poolwood Rd Kewarra Beach                                                                    19:10       Arlington Esp Clifton Beach                                                                 19:30       Williams Esp Palm Cove

All proceeds from the day will go to the Salvation Army and help build and fit out a mobile emergency kitchen.
So bring the kids along to see Santa, fire engines, the sheriffs car, police cars, and have lots of great fun, see you there !!!

For Sale Christmas Style

Living in a popular holiday destination like Cairns, means that your on-the-market home could attract visitors, not only of the family and friends variety, but of the potential buyer kind who are looking to relocate from interstate or overseas.

At this time of year the word ‘declutter’ seems unspeakable when placed in the same sentence as ‘decorations’, ‘holidays’ and ‘family’. However, the reality for you this year is that your home is on the market and it’s a game-changer. You don’t want all of your hard work preparing your home for sale to go to waste over the holiday period.

So how do you balance presenting your home to potential buyers and welcoming your family and friends during December and January?

‘On the twelve days of Christmas my agent said to me…’

1. Creativity is Key
Less is more when styling your home for sale so look at everything with a ‘half as much is twice as good’ attitude this year. Your focus is on inspirational ideas that halve the spatial impact whilst delivering double the benefit to family, friends and onlookers alike.

2. Setting the Scene
Potted colour by the front door is often recommended when styling a home for sale. At this time of year a vibrant door wreath can serve just as well to show a clear path to the front door for first-look drive-by viewers.

Door wreath viewed at http://retrorenovation.com

3. Colour Fusion
Christmas colours complement every palette from beachy blues to earthy tones and everything in between. When selling your home during the festive season, remember to use a colour palette indoors that blends with your existing colour scheme rather than a boldly contrasting one.

4. Star Attraction
This year, your home is the star, not the colourful decorations. Christmas accessories, such as your Christmas tree, decorations and lighting should accentuate the size and features of the rooms without overcrowding them.

5. Deck the Walls
Instead of pulling out the large traditional tree perhaps try inexpensive Christmas wall decals that make your living room look larger, fresher and modern. (Cutely decorated baby optional.)
Christmas Wall Decals from http://www.babyology.com.au

6. Religious Relief
Christmas is a wonderful time of year that is enjoyed by many Australians regardless of their religious origins. Celebrating the season without overtly religious overtones in your home-for-sale will add appeal to the broadest number of potential buyers.

7. Decor’ations
Simple vases and platters are inexpensive ways to add consistent style during and after the celebrations. The trick is to find items with year-round appeal that won’t be out of place in the wake of Santa’s sleigh.

Florals courtesy of http://www.floralimages.com.au

8. Lightening over Lighting
Remember, less is more when presenting your home to the market. Overdoing festive lights can detract from the features of your home inside and out. Far better to invest in washing windows and replacing interior bulbs with the highest energy-efficient wattage. These will show your home in the best possible light to potential buyers.

9. Candle Power
No other decorator item says Christmas quite like candles. They effortlessly blend your on-the-market home’s style with your celebrations. It’s recommended that you place candles at least 3.8 cm apart to make sure they burn evenly. Candle displays are also effortlessly restyled after the festivities.

Candles available at http://www.partylite.com.au

10. Storage Solutions
You want to be able to respond quickly to potential buyer requests to view your home, so enlisting the support of guests and having a place to store their bedding and belongings during the day is essential. Quick storage solutions will help you stay in control of your home’s presentation whilst on the market over the holiday period.

11. Glamour finishes
Can’t help yourself? Satisfy your Christmas styling urge this year by wrapping your gifts in glamour colours and metallic finishes. Go crazy with gold, silver, bronze and copper papers, ribbons and bows.

12. Giving Double
While not strictly a styling idea, gift cards or vouchers are a great gift idea when time and space are restricted. They take up a fraction of the floor space as traditional gifts but may be worth twice as much to your loved ones once the Boxing Day sales kick in.

Source: http://showsell.com.au

7 things to do if your property doesn’t sell

Your house has been dwindling on the market for months, even years, yet nobody wants to bite. What’s going wrong – and more importantly – how can you turn it around?

If your property has been on the market for a long time and you’re just not able to move it, here’s seven things you can do to get out of the rut and get that sold sticker.

1. Refresh your advertising

Most buyers are looking at properties well in advance of purchase. Some research for years. If your listing and promotional details remain unchanged for months on end, your potential buyers will notice – and not notice you as a result.

Shake up your advertising if it’s not working for you as it is.

Photos are one of the most important ways buyers connect with and spark interest in your house. Rotate them around and hero a different shot for people to come across first.

If you had a picture of the inside, try a shot of the facade from the street. Refresh them several times and test the impact on different people, including some you know and trust to give you an honest opinion.

Consider taking new shots if you others aren’t doing the job. If you had an evening shot, try a day time shot. Get help from professionals who know how to accentuate the positive.

Update your property description and try new ways to sell your place to the uninitiated. Work with your agent and be creative in content and approach.

Think carefully about your target market (if you don’t have one, that’s your first problem to solve…)

Try another of the realestate.com.au advertising options. Ask your agent to upgrade you to a featured or premiere listing, or send out a digital brochure.

Premiere properties receive 15 times more views and 8 times more enquiries than a standard ad. You’ll be throwing hard earned money away if you keep paying for an advertising plan that isn’t delivering.
Vary your tactics and when you see results, press your advantage.

2. Change your price

You’ll pay the price if you end up stubbornly attached to one.
The three most important factors in selling a property are location, presentation, and price.

Price points are psychological triggers. One to five thousands dollars in the right direction can spark interest and make a buyer feel a purchase is possible.

In a stagnant or depressed market, price is incredibly sensitive, and can stop an interested buyer from clicking on your listing or lodging that enquiry.
If you’ve had your property listed for some time, the market will have shifted around it. Your price might have started in the ballpark, but now it’s not tenable. Reassess based on comparable properties in todays market terms and re-advertise at a price buyers can confidently respond to.

Put yourself in the shoes of your buyers and be honest about a reasonable cost. Work with your agent and lower that price as much as you need to.
There’s no point clinging to a price dream if your property sits on the market for another year. If you want, or need to sell, then price to sell in the current market (not the market you originally bought in).

3. Take a break from the market

Three things tend to happen if you keep your property on the market for a long time without a break.

Buyers will make a mental note to avoid it, fearing something is wrong because it’s been hanging around so long.

Buyers will use it’s time on market as a negotiating tool, trying to leverage your desperation and arguing that you should be glad for any offer you get.

Or buyers will tune out your property altogether, skimming past it in listings because they’ve seen it so often they’re blind to it.

Three months is often a turning point, when buyers slip comfortably into one of the above scenarios, and you start to get worried.
Though some buyers are on the hunt for a while, each day they’re joined by even more.
If you can afford it, giving your property a rest for a few months means you’ll have a whole new crop of buyers ferreting out their perfect place. They’ll never have met yours, so you’re in with a fresh chance!

4. Give your property a makeover

Get the lowdown from your agent and, if they’re cooperative, buyers who’ve passed on your place. Ask them what turned them off and ask them to be brutally honest. Determine if a refresh is in order.

Ideally you’ll get some specifics that will help you focus any improvements you need to make. It could be the colour of the walls. The lack of decent curb appeal. A garden that feels too high maintenance. A small kitchen. The impression that too much renovation will be needed, or just that the place seemed too messy whenever it was being inspected.

If you haven’t invested in home staging, try it. The professional eye of a stager or stylist can set you up to appeal to your target market, and it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg.
Look at low cost, quick facelifts, like a new coat of paint, a better clean up inside, or some attractive plants in the garden.

It might be that a more substantial renovation is needed, and if it will increase your odds of sale and a good price, it’s probably a better alternative than sitting on the market indefinitely.
Weigh up how much you could invest in big improvements and talk to experts about the changes most likely improve your chances of sale. Be careful not to over capitalise (there are no guarantees), and remember that even a small effort could yield the return you’re looking for.

5. Go comparison shopping

You may have done a ton of homework on selling your house, but forgot to scope out the competition.
Work with your agent to get a handle on how your place measures up against similar properties in the area; in architecture and style, price, size, bedroom and bathroom numbers, land and yard area, proximity to amenities, quality of interiors, style of presentation, and everything in between.

Attend open inspections and auctions. Talk to other buyers at those homes and gather insights.
Don’t just compare the property itself. Have a snoop at how those homes are bring presented, how their open inspections are being run, whether they’re being sold at auction or by private treaty, and anything else that jumps out at you. See what’s popular and what people are talking about.

Comparing doesn’t mean making your property conform to everyone else’s.
It’s about getting in touch with the reality of the market in your area and price bracket. It’s staying abreast of trends or contexts that might impact your sale.
And it’s being able to post an asking price you can comprehensively, unbiasedly, justify. When you can compare apples with apples, you’re ready to set up shop.

6. Be open to advice
If your property has been languishing on the market for some time, you’ve probably already asked for help. You’ve checked with your agent, or asked family or friends about why they think your place isn’t hooking a new owner.

But let’s be honest. You might not be listening, especially if they’re telling you things you might not want to hear.
Ask for advice (if you haven’t yet, now’s the time), and truly be open to it; from your agent, from property experts, from potential buyers and those you trust.

Steel yourself for a reality check and commit to taking on constructive suggestions.

7. Don’t lay blame (especially on yourself)
It’s easy to point fingers if your property isn’t living up to expectations. Selling can be highly stressful, and if you’re in a tricky financial spot (eg. you’ve already purchased another property and are feeling the pressure to sell in a hurry), the tension can be crippling.

Like any stressful situation, getting upset or angry won’t help.
Even if you decide you need to move to a new real estate agent, don’t leave with a grudge or you won’t be fully focused on the new chance to sell your home. An agent and vendor relationship is a two way street and you two may just not have worked as a partnership.

Taking a break from the market helps get you back on track and stop blame in its tracks.
Maybe you honestly weren’t ready to sell.
Refocus, take a breath, then re-arm with any new tools or support you need to get back out there. There might only be some small changes to your home and your strategy standing in the way of you and the finish line.

Stay positive and you’re half way there.
Source: realestate.com.au

A total solar eclipse touches Australia – Astronomy Magazine

A total solar eclipse touches Australia – Astronomy Magazine.

Cairns Regional Council in focus

Local news, views and what’s happening around Cairns.

The September edition of #Cairns Regional Council In Focus is now available online


Great News for Cairns. We will host G20 Finance Ministers Meeting in 2014.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced at a press conference on The Esplanade that Cairns will host the G20 Finance Ministers’ meeting in 2014.

Around 4,000 delegates and 3,000 international media are expected to attend the event, which is likely to be held at the Brisbane Exhibition and Convention Centre. An invitation to the November 2014 meeting is extended to leaders of the world’s 20 largest economies.

Leaders from other regional cities including the Gold Coast, Townsville and Toowoomba had previously indicated an interest in hosting the international meeting of finance ministers ahead of the summit in Brisbane.

As many as 2,000 people will visit Cairns as part of the meeting, giving us the opportunity to promote Far North Queensland to the world.

“The reef, the tropical rainforests, its a tremendous opportunity to showcase a part of Australia which is the gateway to the emerging world in Asia.” said Wayne Swan.

The G20 meeting has the potential to provide a huge boost to the Cairns economy then and into the future, including accommodation, hospitality, transport and tourism.

That Competitive Gap – RE/MAX Australia Launches True Global Real Estate Listing Site

The difference between RE/MAX and everyone else –  just got a whole lot wider.

global.remax.com, the first truly global resource for consumers, with hundreds of thousands of home listings in countries around the world has officially been launched here in Australia and is now live. The site features customised search tools that allow our potential buyers to search for properties in 30 languages, translate currencies and find the latest international real estate news.

RE/MAX Australia members are now able to show their sellers how buyers can view their properties in their native language and currency, regardless of where they are located along with guaranteeing exposing their clients properties to a worldwide audience.  Did you know that over 20% of Australian households do not use English as their first language!  Just one huge benefit of why the marketplace should list with a RE/MAX agent.

“We’re seeing an increasing number of foreign buyers looking for property in Cairns and all of Australia and vice versa. global.remax.com is essentially a one-stop source for residential and commercial real estate, no matter where you live.” said Michael Davoren, RE/MAX Australia Managing Director.

RE/MAX has a presence in more than 80 countries, a global reach far greater than any competitor and the power of such a site of this scale will open the doors to international business.