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More than one-third of Brisbane units sold in the March quarter were sold at a loss, data shows, with the city recording its worst result in almost six years.
CoreLogic’s Pain and Gain report, released on Monday, revealed 35.9 per cent of sellers in the Brisbane unit market lost money on their investments between January and March this year.
But it was much better news for Brisbane house sellers, with more than 95.2 per cent of people who sold their homes making a profit.
The overall proportion of Brisbane properties selling at a loss was the highest it had been since November 2013, according to CoreLogic.
Across greater Brisbane, taking in the Brisbane, Ipswich, Lockyer Valley, Logan, Moreton Bay, Redlands, Scenic Rim and Somerset councils, the total value of those losses was $37.1 million.
Still, the Queensland capital performed better than the national average.
Nationally, 87.9 per cent of properties made a profit for their owners, which was down from 89.5 per cent in the December quarter and 91 per cent at the same time last year.
CoreLogic analyst Cameron Kusher said the “real kicker” was that it was Australia’s lowest proportion of profit-making sales since the March quarter of 2013.
"When relatively few properties are selling at a loss, it's a general indicator of a stronger housing market," he said.
"If a higher proportion of properties are reselling at a loss, it's a sign of weaker housing market conditions.”
The situation was worse in regional Queensland, with 14.9 per cent of houses and 25.4 per cent of units being sold at a loss.
A lot of that could be attributed to the end of the mining boom, although there were signs of recovery.
“Although losses remain high, the proportion of resales at a loss have reduced from their peaks over recent quarters, with most mining regions moving through their peak of loss making sales over the past few years,” Mr Kusher notes in the report.
“... While the resources sector is looking somewhat stronger than it has in a number of years, it is expected that the instances of resales at a loss will remain elevated despite the gradually improving trend.
“Although transaction volumes have moved through a trough in many of the mining dominated regions, there are still many owners that bought at or near the market peak looking to sell and likely to incur losses when they do eventually sell their property.
“Furthermore, although conditions may be improving, it is likely to be a very long road back to the previous high property values in these regions.”
Overall, Australian sellers made $14.3 billion on property sales in the March quarter, largely off the back of Sydney (24.3 per cent of all profits) and Melbourne (23.5 per cent), with losses substantially lower at $486.8 million.
The highest share of losses nationally were in Perth (24.8 per cent) and in Sydney (19.9 per cent).