Local Developments Update: January/February 2020

According to the latest report from CoreLogic (January 2020 report), regional NSW has reported a decrease in the volume of houses for sale (-4%)  and an increase in population (4%). They have also said that the investor portion of total new mortgage lending at a decade low in the state (32.2%). The combination of all these figures has placed increased pressure on the availability of rental properties, driving the vacancy rates down to just 1.2% in the Hunter (Jan 2020, REINSW) and pushing up rents by 1.7%.

We’ll be keeping an eye on these trends as the year progresses. In the meantime, here’s a snapshot of what’s happening in property and developments as we move through 2020.


The median price of units in the Newcastle Council area has dropped by 2.3% over the last 12 months, currently sitting at $500,000* and are achieving an average of $475 per week in rent. There has also been a 43.7% drop in the number of units for sale compared to 2 years ago.  These numbers will change as more luxury units from the ongoing and new developments in the city are sold.

Work is now underway on stage 2 of the residential and retail development in the Hunter Street Mall, marking the next milestone in the Iris Capital’s $700 million revitalisation of the city’s East End. Another excellent result for the town is the inclusion in the development of the first Woolworths Metro outside of a capital city.

The City of Newcastle has announced that they are going to fund the restoration of both Newcastle and Merewether Ocean Baths. They plan to form a community reference group to guide the restoration projects. The improvements to the facilities will benefit the community and Newcastle tourism.

Newcastle-Ocean-Baths-(1).jpgThe existing facade of the Newcastle Ocean Baths

As previously reported the conversion of the CBD’s iconic ’roundhouse’ building to Newcastle’s first 5-star hotel. It’s been revealed that the hotel will be called Kingsley, and include 130 wedge-shaped rooms, a rooftop restaurant and pool inside a new six-metre glass addition.

Also approved for development within the civic precinct is the Doma Group’s nine-storey residential and commercial redevelopment in Merewether Street and a 20-storey apartment block in Denison Street, Newcastle West. We’ll let you know as we hear more!

Lake Macquarie

The first stage of Spotlight Group’s $100m retail and commercial centre at Bennetts Green began construction late 2019. The 30,000 square-metre site is due to open towards the end of this year and include Bunnings Warehouse, Spotlight, Anaconda, BP Petrol station, McDonald’s restaurant and other businesses like Nick Scali. The location creates a substantial shopping precinct, raises the profile of the area, bringing with it jobs and a lift in housing desirability.

FUTURE: An artist's impression of the retail and commercial centre.Photo: An artist’s impression of the retail and commercial centre at Bennetts Green.

  1. coordinating housing land supply and infrastructure
  2. increasing diversity and choice in housing
  3. facilitating infill opportunities for housing close to jobs and services
  4. increasing affordable rental housing and homeownership
  5. accommodating and guiding housing design and innovation

You can have your say by completing their survey.

To manage Lake Mcaquries Coastlines and waterways, the Council are reviewing the Coastal Zone Management Plan 2015 and identifying new opportunities to improve the area while maintaining community access and recreation. Go to their website to provide your feedback and suggestions.


Maitland has seen a compound growth rate of 8.7% for houses and 2.6% for units and is an ideal place if you are looking for an investment property, providing annual rental yields between 4.5-5.3% for homes and units^.

The growing community in the Maitland are also undergoing several major redevelopment projects in the area, further improving local facilities and helping to increase housing desirability.

Following the completion of No.1 Sportground, construction has recently begun on the $10.5m Athletics Centre Project. This work completes the final stage of significant upgrades to the sporting complex and is due for completion in June 2020.

Photo: An artist’s impression of the civic precinct development in Maitland.

In one of our previous updates, we spoke about the proposed $43 million civic precinct development. The project is now approved, and construction is due to start mid-2020 on the new Maitland Administration building (estimated cost of $28m), associated groundworks, upgrades to Town Hall, parking and site landscaping improvements. It’s expected to be completed in late 2021 and will hopefully bring new vitality to the main street.



Interested in chatting further about developments or the local property market? Wondering about branching out with your property investments in 2020?

Get in touch with our Investment Services team today for objective information and insight.


* Figures based on Core Logic data for November 2019 for the Newcastle Council Area

^ Figures based on latest neighbourhood data for Maitland on realestate.com.au (19/2/20)



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