Will strong demand for Lismore properties hike house prices?
NEW housing finance data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics has revealed a surge in borrowing for property purchases in December 2019.
Lismore real estate agent Cory Byrne said that likewise, the local housing market was experiencing a high level of interest from buyers, in particular first home buyers.
"As soon as we came back from holidays in January it was just mental," Mr Byrne said.
"Compared to last year we have half the stock and more buyers floating around at the moment.
"Demand is greatly outweighing supply.
"A couple of properties recently went for $10,000 to $50,000 more than the reserve price.
"It's rare that a house in the $350,000 to $450,000 range sits on the market for more than a couple of weeks."
Mr Byrne said the local market had been relatively unaffected by the first home buyers scheme, released on January 1, allowing people to buy their first home with just a five per cent deposit.
"Only a couple of people have come forward and said they're using the 5 per cent deposit scheme," he said.
The market has been flat for a year, with the median house price gravitating at the $345,000 mark.
Mr Byrne said the 2017 floods remain a deterrent for prospective buyers coming from other areas, but Lismore locals were unperturbed.