In hot demand: Active holiday period for home buyers and tenants

Many people expect Christmas and the new year period to be quiet but business is booming in the Orange real estate market.

SOLD: Ray White principal Libby Seaman, in front of an Orange property that has recently sold, says the Christmas and new year period has been busy with people looking for homes to rent or buy. Photo: ANDREW MURRAY

SOLD: Ray White principal Libby Seaman, in front of an Orange property that has recently sold, says the Christmas and new year period has been busy with people looking for homes to rent or buy. Photo: ANDREW MURRAY

Investors from Sydney looking for good returns as well as opportunities in education and jobs in health are leading the demand.

Ray White principal Libby Seaman said it has been a busy time for people looking for rental accommodation, and for buyers, with one of her sales people taking seven prospective buyers through one property.

“One of the reasons is that a lot of the agencies are closed,” Ms Seaman said.

“A lot of our investors are coming from Sydney and then we’ve got the normal moving around, down-sizing and up-sizing.

“Already I’ve given five sales advices and we are up to the second day of the year.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, the agency had three vacant properties for rent.

“There’s not a large amount to choose from and we’ve been inundated with people.”

She said they’ve also had people who were prepared to sign longer leases in order to secure a place.  

With nine to 10 applications for each rental property, she said property owners could be more selective with who they rent to.

“Education and health are the two big draw cards for Orange,” Ms Seaman said.

“There’s new places for schools and doctors so there are people looking to relocate, likewise with Sydney, people are coming from Sydney, the investors are back in Orange.”

She said the return of investors resulted from high property prices in Newcastle and Sydney and the prospect of better returns in Orange.

One of her recent sales was to an Orange woman who plans to rent her new house out for two years but then plans to return to town and live here.

Century 21 principal Andrew Vogler said his agency sold three properties on the Saturday before Christmas Day and two properties on the Saturday before New Year’s Eve. 

“It’s always very active in January, a lot of people think it quietens down,” he said.

“It’s a pretty active time in terms of people coming in and out of Orange.

“There’s quite a lot of investors looking at this area as well.”

Mr Vogler said tourism groups have done a wonderful job in the past few years promoting Orange as a destination, “rather than the cold spot on the weather map”. 

Figures for the current quarter are not yet available, but in the  last quarter from September to December 2017, Domain, had the median house price in Orange listed as $366,500, 5.3 per cent higher than the September 2016 quarter. 

However, the it was one per cent less than $370,000 in the June 2017 quarter.

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