Australia’s economic recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic has been led by the performance of its east coast property market, according to end of financial year figures released by one of Australia’s leading digital property settlement platforms.

PEXA’s Property and Mortgage Insights (PMI) report provides unique insights into property settlement and mortgage trends across the east coast property market, analysing metropolitan vs regional, residential vs commercial, growth in lending, and the performance of major and non-major lenders.

Fuelled by low interest rates, government stimulus and increased buyer demand, Queensland outshone its southern neighbours throughout a COVID-19 impacted financial year.

PEXA senior research manager Mike Gill said the company has witnessed the demonstrative impact the pandemic has had on the Victorian property market, with both New South Wales and Queensland recording comparatively bumper year-on-year numbers across both metropolitan and regional areas.

“The Sunshine State has had an incredible year in property, with Greater Brisbane jumping more than 50 per cent on last year’s figures, and the rest of Queensland delivering significant year-on-year gains.

“We have seen solid results in New South Wales across the state with settlements up 26 per cent, and Victoria’s 10 per cent year-on-year growth was propped up by strong results in regional and commercial sectors.

Most notably, we have seen a trend across the east-coast of greater activity in our regional areas, with sale settlements outside of capital cities up 36% in New South Wales, 28 per cent n Victoria, and 23 per cent in Queensland year-on-year.

Mr Gill said the report also analyses consumer lending behaviour, with FY21 numbers suggesting regional buyers were less likely than city buyers to fund their new purchase with a loan.

Close to 80 per cent of capital city settlements procured were funded with a new loan, compared to only 66 per cent for regional settlements, suggesting metropolitan homeowners are moving to regional areas to take advantage of lower priced properties, flexible working arrangements and a change in lifestyle.  

“There also appeared to be greater consumer preference towards major banks for new loans in New South Wales and Victoria due to highly competitive rates, particularly for fixed rate loans and special offers, such as cash back incentives. Queensland consumers bucked this trend, with the gap narrowing in favour of the non-major lenders within the state from January 2021.”