FOMO fuels Brisbane’s house price boom


The latest data from PropTrack shows that Brisbane has recorded the strongest dwelling value growth on the East Coast since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020:

East coast house price growth

Brisbane dwelling values have risen 58% since March 2020, according to PropTrack, dwarfing the 31% growth in Sydney and 15% growth in Melbourne over the same period.

CoreLogic’s daily dwelling values index also shows that Brisbane home values continue to rise at a solid clip, up 0.7% over the past 28 days versus 0.4% at the 5-city aggregate level.

CoreLogic 28-day change

The ABC published a report over the weekend on how ‘fear of missing out’ (FOMO) is driving Brisbane’s housing market.

“It’s the competition really that we’re struggling with. There’s not a lot on offer and places are just getting snapped up super quick”, homebuyer Pheobe said.


“Prices are skyrocketing and it’s a race against the clock really to get into the market”.

“It’s frustrating as we see things coming up, and by the time we get to the first inspection, an offer has already been made”, another homebuyer interviewed by the ABC said.

CoreLogic head of research, Eliza Owen, said that Brisbane’s relative affordability compared to its larger Southern counterparts is likely to drive further demand and growth.

“It’s still got a relatively affordable price point with more value for money than what we see in the major southern capital cities”, she said.


“There’s also been very intense levels of interstate migration”.

“That, coupled with the return of overseas migration, is really driving up demand pressures across Brisbane”, Owen said.

Owen added that for sale listings were some 30% lower than what Brisbane would historically see.

Eliza Owen’s analysis of Brisbane is spot on.


Queensland (especially the South East) has added nearly 130,000 residents from other states since the beginning of the pandemic. Most of these have come from NSW (Sydney) and Victoria (Melbourne):

Net internal migration

The relative affordability of housing in Queensland is a significant contributing factor to this northward migration.

Brisbane’s median house price was 74% of the national average in December 2023, which is heavily weighted towards Sydney and Melbourne:

Brisbane vs other capitals

Brisbane’s house prices will eventually hit an affordability ceiling. But we’re not there yet.

The infrastructure investment related to the 2032 Olympics should also help Brisbane housing outperform its larger southern counterparts this decade.

About the author
Leith van Onselen is Chief Economist at the MB Fund and MB Super. He is also a co-founder of MacroBusiness. Leith has previously worked at the Australian Treasury, Victorian Treasury and Goldman Sachs.