Caution with marginal seat promises

Caution with marginal seat promises

Posted on Thursday, March 01 2012 at 10:28 AM

Signalling the start of election month in Queensland, followed by the Australian Capital Territory election in October, it’s time to consider if marginal seat suburbs with infrastructure and service promises by political candidates could be the road map to investment opportunity.

Brisbane-based Scott McGeever of Property Searchers Buyers Agents expects that in what has been a fragile property market investors will be more cautious than ever when listening to government or opposition election promises, even if government dollars are already being spent on roads or small gentrification improvements in a marginal suburb prior to the election.

However, he said if Queensland Premier candidate Campbell Newman is successful in being elected into the seat of Ashgrove, locals are likely to see more investment in the area due to the desire to hold that seat and state premiership, “but probably only subtly”.

“I think investors are more likely now than ever to wait for legislation to happen in terms of infrastructure promises before buying on speculation,” he said.

“Take for example the rail line to Kippa Ring – many investors bought there off the back of a State and Federal Government commitment and now who knows what’s happening with that project? What I do know is that the property market is currently very flat.”

He refers to the shelving of another project, the bypass to cut through Kenmore.

McGeever said investors are always safer if private development is proposed and under way in an area in addition to government promises.

In Canberra, the ACT election gets under way in October and already the sitting government has launched into campaign mode with proposed gentrification of its town centres in some of its marginal seat areas.

Canberra-based Tim Dalton of Dalton and Peace The Estate Agents said proposed gentrification in these areas could certainly signal where potential new opportunities for investors will be in the coming years in rental demand and capital growth.

However like McGeever, Dalton said nothing’s certain until it’s legislation and private spending starts pouring into an area.

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