Rules, supply hit land sales

Hayden Real Estate Ocean Grove's Hugh McKewan. (Mark Heenan Media)

A leading local real estate agent has confirmed Ocean Grove is feeling the effects of building approvals at their lowest in five years.

Victorian building approvals were down eight per cent at end of the December quarter compared to the last three months in 2017.

Hayden Real Estate Ocean Grove director Hugh McKewan said the findings of the banking royal commission were further proof banks had tightened their lending criteria.

“In my (estimation) probably about half the buyers that were approved to get finance were taken out of the market,” McKewan told the Voice.

A lack of available land to purchase in Ocean Grove had also put pressure on sales, he said.

“We don’t have a lot of land. We have the Yellow Gums Estate, there’s Kingston and Oakdene. The Kingston estate doesn’t have (new) titles for quite some time.

“Six months ago they would sell a stage out in a minute.”

Ocean Grove Real Estate’s Allason Lynch said there was no scheduled date on a new land release in the town.

Ms Lynch, also communications manager for the Kingston estate, confirmed the emphasis was now on construction rather than land sales.

Forty-eight of 60 blocks at the estate’s last release, Kingston Coast Estate, sold in a day, she said.

“We don’t have land on the market at the moment or a land release coming up.

“Our last land release was the last quarter of the end of 2018. Any land sales we’ve had were based on the market then.”

Meanwhile, online property sales sites gave Ocean Grove a median house price around $700,000 at the start of February.

Mr McKewan said he did not expect any decline in the value of the town’s existing homes.

“What happens in Ocean Grove is people don’t sell, so the volume of sales becomes less and prices generally don’t suffer.”

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