Lower Dollar spikes demand for holiday homes
Vacant holiday homes will be as rare as leftover prawns this summer with many Australians choosing a domestic stay due to the lower Dollar.
LJ Hooker’s annual holiday letting survey – completed by its holiday property managers in November - found more than 85% of homes had been snapped up a month before the Christmas, New Year and school holiday break. All property managers were confident of filling the remaining apartments and houses prior to Christmas.
Seventy-eight percent of holiday property managers reported an increase in enquiry compared to the 2015-2016 summer. But in a significant year-on-year shift in the results, ‘affordability’ had gone from the ‘least important’ consideration of holidaymakers in 2015-16, to the ‘most important’ priority in 2016-17.
LJ Hooker’s Head of Research Mathew Tiller said the findings showed the Australian Dollar had again encouraged holidaymakers to enjoy time domestically this year.
“Last summer holidays, the Australian Dollar had plummeted from parity to around $US0.80 over 12 months,” said Mr Tiller. “For that reason, many holidaymakers in 2015-16 saw better value in splurging out on luxury at home than paying for international airfares and getting short-changed on the exchange rate.
“Twelve months on, the Dollar has remained soft, hovering around $US0.74 over the course of the year. With four in five property managers enquiring an increase in enquiry this year, it appears more holidaymakers have dismissed an overseas summer holiday this year.”
Mr Tiller said the rapid rise in affordability signalled a mindshift in holiday
“Last year, the value between holidaying locally or abroad widened dramatically. This year, we’re again in a different economic environment where overseas travel is even more expensive.
“Holidaying domestically has become the only choice for many, and finding an ‘at-home’ choice which in itself is affordable and of value is now the focus.”
The other most listed priorities for holiday makers were properties that were ‘walking distance to the beach’, ‘activities for children’, and ‘entertaining and barbecue area’.