Downer: in focus

The Inner North region of Canberra has been red-hot these past few months. With the Dickson centre redevelopment, the light rail corridor getting the green light, and the rise of Braddon's hipster and coffee scene, it's Downer's time to shine. Relative affordability when you look at 'big sister' nearby Ainslie, but is that about to change?

Downer is not, as the name might suggest, a 'downer'. There's a lot of positive change happening in the suburb, and renovations and townhouse developments are increasing in number. The shopping centre and the dilapidated Primary School in the middle of the suburb have lain in ruins over the past few years, frequented only by drug users or graffiti artists (I shouldn't use the word 'artist' as Canberra has some great graffiti, but it's not found here!). The Downer shops are to be renewed, much to the delight of the active Downer Community Association. The old school site will see affordable apartments, both of which are currently under construction. I'm looking forward to seeing the final result expected in early 2017, and to see another local shopping centre breathing new energy into the suburban community once more.

The median house price in Downer currently sits at $765,000 (source: CoreLogic) yet many buyers are struggling to find a family home for that price. At the beginning of this month, a block (land only) sold for $715,000. So with the median house price on the rise, driven largely by super-keen buyers and a mere trickle of new listings, what can you expect to get for your money these days in Downer?

 

709m2 with 4 bedrooms, this home on Banfield St went to auction and sold for $810,000 last month.

709m2 with 4 bedrooms, this home on Banfield St went to auction and sold for $810,000 last month.

3 bedrooms on Atherton St with modest updates and a blank canvas for landscaping sold for $780,000 by auction this month.

3 bedrooms on Atherton St with modest updates and a blank canvas for landscaping sold for $780,000 by auction this month.

This well-presented 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom home on 917m2 came oh-so-close to the magic $1m mark when it sold at auction for $996,000 at the beginning of Spring.

This well-presented 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom home on 917m2 came oh-so-close to the magic $1m mark when it sold at auction for $996,000 at the beginning of Spring.

$720,000 for this 5yo dual occ'y with 3 bedrooms on 405m2, sold at auction last month.

$720,000 for this 5yo dual occ'y with 3 bedrooms on 405m2, sold at auction last month.

 

The local primary school may be long gone, but the preschool in Downer remains with a choice of public primary schools after that. Lyneham, Majura (with its Stephanie Alexander 'Kitchen Garden' program for students) and popular North Ainslie Primary schools are all local options. Lyneham and Campbell High Schools, and Dickson College are the in-area schools for secondary education. 

Local private schooling options include Emmaus Christian School in Dickson (P-10), Brindabella Christian College in Lyneham (P-12) and Daramalan College (7-12) in Dickson.

Artist's impression of the new Dickson shopping centre. While the development has been approved by the ACT Government, there is an appeal hearing beginning tomorrow which may alter the final result. Source: Canberra Times.

Artist's impression of the new Dickson shopping centre. While the development has been approved by the ACT Government, there is an appeal hearing beginning tomorrow which may alter the final result. Source: Canberra Times.

Currently on the market:

17 Atherton St is an original condition 3 bedroom, 1 bathroom home on a corner 773m2 block, going to auction 3/12/16.

17 Atherton St is an original condition 3 bedroom, 1 bathroom home on a corner 773m2 block, going to auction 3/12/16.

13 Fenner St is also unrenovated, a 694m2 block with 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. Auction set for 17/12/16.

13 Fenner St is also unrenovated, a 694m2 block with 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. Auction set for 17/12/16.

Wondering what these will sell for? That's where quality research and knowing the market comes in. Being prepared and understanding negotiation and bidding strategies will save you money every day of the week. Feel free to get in touch and we can have a chat about how I can best help you.