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Housing affordability a matter of perspective

By Ray White Gladstone

By Emily Kemp, Gladstone Observer 30/11/2012

DESCRIBING a house price of under $500,000 as “affordable” may seem a joke for many, but Ray White Real Estate director Andrew Allen said it was all about perspective.

“Compared to the cost of housing in other mining and industry towns, such as Moranbah which is about $700,000-$800,000 for a home, it is certainly more affordable than that,” Mr Allen said.

“For people on average incomes, anything up to $500,000 is definitely a battle.”

The Real Estate Institute of Queensland’s September quarter report found Gladstone’s local government area median price to be $455,000.

“It is basically supply and demand that drives the housing prices,” Mr Allen said.

He agreed that Gladstone had a two-speed economy.

“Definitely there is (an imbalance). Anyone working in the construction industry or related industries, definitely they’re the bigger wage earners,” he said.

Some Gladstone residents have voiced concerns that affordability of new houses was coming at the expense of quality.

“The rising costs of construction means a lot of people can only afford a certain level of quality. It just becomes too expensive,” Mr Allen said.

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