Forecasting the Retail Property Market in 2024

Brisbane's Struggle and Signs of Renewed Interest

According to the AFR, Brisbane’s Logan Hyperdome mall, listed at $700 million, failed to secure a buyer, highlighting the disconnect between seller and buyer expectations. This led to a reset in local shopping centre values, causing some assets to be withdrawn due to pricing ambiguity. However, glimmers of activity from other big players like Lendlease hint at a potential upswing in transactions.

Gold Coast's Resilience versus Supply Challenges

Despite the Gold Coast's economic strength, marked by growth, population surges, and thriving tourism, it grapples with a critical supply issue. While the region has a thriving economy, there is also a severe shortage in new property development due to exorbitant construction costs, up 44% since 2020. The mismatch between demand and supply looms large as a hurdle.

Sunshine Coast: Softening Amid Economic Headwinds

On the Sunshine Coast, economic headwinds and escalating interest rates have softened the retail market. Entry-level retail properties, particularly in hinterland areas, predominantly attract owner-occupiers, while investor interest remains muted due to economic uncertainties.

Amidst these fluctuations, entry-level retail properties maintain their allure due to stable rental incomes, despite inherent risks tied to market volatility, tenant quality, and potential capital expenditures. Pricing dynamics fluctuate significantly based on location, significantly impacting the investment threshold for potential buyers.

Looking Ahead: Navigating Uncertainties

Predictions for 2024 point toward continued price corrections at varying rates across sectors and regions. Aligning vendor expectations with the market is essential for fostering transactional momentum. Stability in interest rates and an economic recovery might rekindle investor confidence, potentially triggering increased transactions, particularly in prime locations boasting strong retail line-ups.

While uncertainties and challenges persist, the potential for recalibrated pricing, coupled with more stable economic conditions, offers hope for increased market activity in the coming year. Navigating these fluctuations intelligently might offer opportunities for investors to capitalise on the diverse retail property landscape.