The First Swedish National Pension Fund, AP1, has invested SEK444m (€48m) in Southern Pastures, the largest institutional farmland fund in New Zealand.The stake represents the first agricultural investment in AP1’s SEK266.7bn portfolio, although it already invests in 20 agricultural properties in Australia and around 10 in Zealand, the latter in Southern Pastures.Ossian Ekdahl, head of communication and ESG at AP1, said: “The intention is for the investments to provide a long-term stable and secure return and, through a differing return pattern, for these to contribute as a complement to the rest of the portfolio.”Southern Pastures was launched in March 2012 with AP1 and a number of individuals as the initial limited partners. Total net assets under management, including committed capital, currently total NZD320m (€202m), with a target of NZD350m, and final close set for 31 December 2014.Southern Pastures’s mission is to produce the finest quality milk using sustainable farming methods emphasising innovation, integrity and social responsibility and using the highest ethical standards to promote growth within its farms.Ekdahl said: “The emphasis on ESG was a factor we evaluated and appreciated. Analysis of sustainability factors is handled as an integral part of AP1’s evaluation process before an investment decision is made.“The focus here was on ensuring the agricultural activities were conducted in a responsible and long-term, sustainable manner, thereby minimising operational risks.” The investment is booked in the fund’s new investments portfolio.AP1 declined to comment on expected returns, but said the new investments portfolio returned 4.5% for the first six months of 2014, compared with 6.5% for the portfolio as a whole, after expenses.However, Ekdahl said there was no target allocation for the dairy sector within AP1’s portfolio.Meanwhile AP3, the Third Swedish National Pension Fund, and Norwegian pensions provider Storebrand have invested in a private placement of shares in Cortendo, a global biopharmaceutical company.The company, based in the US but incorporated in Sweden, develops products to treat orphan endocrine disorders.Both institutions were already investors in the company.AP3 invested SEK19.4m, taking its shareholding to 9.4% of the company, while Storebrand’s injection brings its stake to 9.8%.The other investors participating in the issue were HealthCap, a European venture capital company investing in life sciences, and Arctic Fund Management, with a total of SEK81.5m raised.The private placement is intended to provide financing and a widened access to resources, in order to advance corporate goals and develop Cortendo’s lead drug candidate COR-003, used to treat Cushing’s syndrome and currently undergoing global trials.Ulrica Slåne, portfolio manager for life science at AP3, said: “Our investment in Cortendo is a good example of AP3’s healthcare strategy to provide promising companies with the financial capabilities to reach the market with new innovative medicines, and the potential to provide AP3 with a good return on our investments.”Cortendo will now evaluate alternative options, including a US financing and listing strategy.The US represents the largest potential market for COR-003.Lastly, Folketrygdfondet, the Norwegian government pension fund, has sold its 6.4% stake in Cermaq, the international fish farming group based in Oslo, to Mitsubishi Corporation, for NOK570m (€67.4m).Olaug Svarva, chief executive at Folketrygdfondet, said: “Combined with the sale of Cermaq’s feed business to the private equity funds Altor and Bain Capital last year, this sale will generate a strong return for shareholders.“However, we consider aquaculture a strategically important industry with major growth potential and therefore intend to retain significant investments in other companies in the sector.”Svarva said she expected continued strong value growth in the aquaculture industry.She said aquaculture companies accounted for 5.1% of the assets on the Oslo Stock Exchange, with a total market value of NOK89bn, as at 15 October.In contrast, 10 years ago, the industry accounted for just 0.4% of the total assets represented on the same exchange.The Norwegian government has also sold its 59.17% stake in Cermaq to Mitsubishi, which was to complete its purchase of all Cermaq shares during November.
British Airways (BA) has won the latest round of its five-year legal battle with the trustees of the Airways Pension Scheme (APS) in a UK court decision that could have wide-ranging ramifications over who has ultimate control of companies’ pension funds.The UK’s Court of Appeal today ruled that BA would not have to pay a £12m (€13.6m) discretionary payment granted by the trustees of APS in 2013. The trustees had acted to compensate for a move by the fund away from the benchmark inflation retail prices index (RPI) to the consumer prices index (CPI), which tends to be lower.In 2010, government civil service pensions moved to adopt CPI as their measure of inflation – and the 0.2% bump introduced by the trustees was designed to boost benefits by 50% of the difference between the CPI and RPI increases.Founded in 1974 following the merger of four airlines, BA was privatised in 1987. However, the airline’s pension fund – as part of a former state sector company – is still bound by public sector pension rules. In a statement, BA said it was “pleased with the decision, which brings clarity over how the scheme should be administered”.Mark Blyth, a litigation partner at law firm Linklaters, which acted on behalf of BA, added: “The judgement is complete common sense – why should the trustees be the scheme’s paymaster?”However, APS said in a statement to its scheme members that it was “analysing the full implications of the judgment” and assessing the next steps, including a possible appeal to the UK’s Supreme Court.“The Court of Appeal’s decision does not change the high court judge’s findings that the-then APS trustees and their advisers acted appropriately in relation to the 2011 and 2013 decisions,” the statement said, referring to moves made by the trustees to grant the discretionary pension increase – and the subsequent 0.2% increase. The trustees for the scheme, who have been granted the right to appeal, were backed by the Association of British Airways Pensioners (ABAP), which said it was “bitterly disappointed” with the decision.“This means that yet more BA pensioners will not live to see any benefit from the modest rise proposed by the scheme’s trustee in 2013,” said Mark Fielder, chair of ABAP.The association urged the trustees to “not give up the fight”.However, Fielder warned: “The total costs of this legal action are not yet known but are quite likely to exceed the cost of paying the rise in the first place.”
The new fund is to invest in NOK50bn (€4.4bn) of bonds to help Norwegian companies access liquidity in the economic crisis precipitated by the pandemic.Folketrygdfondet said it would report on the development of the Government Bond Fund in connection with its second quarter results for 2020, which are due to be published in August.Meanwhile, the manager reported that the now NOK237.2bn GPFN – the smaller Nordic investment portion of the country’s overall sovereign wealth fund – suffered an 11.7% investment loss in the first three months of this year, when the coronavirus outbreak and its knock-on effects pummelled Norway’s financial markets.Last month the larger part of the SWF, the NOK10.5trn Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), reported it made a 14.6% investment loss between January and March.Equities, which made up 57.5% of the GPFN portfolio at the end of March, finished the reporting period with a 20.58% loss – underperforming the benchmark by 0.08 percentage points, according to Folketrygdfondet’s report.The fund’s only other asset class – bonds – produced a 2.54% return, which was 0.03 percentage points above the benchmark, and ended the quarter with a 42.5% portfolio weighting.However, the GPFN’s holdings in neighbouring Nordic countries appear to have saved its equities portfolio from the worst of the Norwegian bourse’s first quarter slump.The fund’s current equities allocation consists of 47% slice of the fund invested in Norwegian shares and a 10.5% slice in Danish, Swedish and Finnish shares.While the Norwegian equities market fell by 24.1% in the first quarter, the Danish, Swedish and Finnish bourses declined by 14.9%, 13.1% and 11.3%, respectively, in the same period, Folketrygdfondet said in its interim report.“The Norwegian market was hit by the coronavirus situation, a sharp fall in the krone exchange rate and a particularly severe fall in oil prices of as much as 66%, another thing which marked the results for the Government Pension Fund Norway,” Houg said.Over the last 10 years, Folketrygdfondet said it had beaten the market by 0.7 percentage points annually on average, returning an average 7.2% a year.Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here. The new Norwegian Government Bond Fund is now open for business and took on its first debt assets at the end of March, just days after the fund was recreated as part of the government’s rescue strategy for domestic businesses struggling to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 crisis.Folketrygdfondet – the Oslo-based manager tasked in mid-March with reprising the bond fund which helped Norway cope with the 2008 financial crisis – made the announcement alongside first quarter results for the main fund it manages, the Government Pension Fund Norway (GPFN).The organisation said its responsibility for the restored Government Bond Fund began on 27 March, adding: “The first investment was made on the same day, less than two weeks after the measure was first announced by the government.”Kjetil Houg, Folketrygdfondet’s chief executive officer, said: “We strongly believe that this will contribute to increased liquidity and capital inflows in the Norwegian bond market.”
There is a significant gap between the ESG-related content investors are looking for and the content being provided by asset managers, according to a report aimed at helping the latter work out how they could “better contribute to the complex ESG conversation”.Produced by Peregrine Communications, the report conveys research it did in response to feedback from asset management marketers.“I spend a lot of my time talking to chief marketing officers and last year I kept hearing again and again from everyone … everybody wants to have something to say on ESG but I think they feel so drowned in the fact that there’s so much content, they don’t know how to say something that is useful for the people they care about,” said Josh Cole, head of analytics at Peregrine, whose clients are almost exclusively asset managers.In the report Peregrine said: “The high pressure on asset management marketers to create content that will educate, inform, and engage their audiences on these topics has led to a proliferation of content that has often come at the expense of clarity or real thought leadership”. “At worst,” it continued, “it has led to claims from industry observers, not always unfounded, of ‘green washing’.”Think about the ‘white spaces’Peregrine found that a large amount of ESG coverage in the media coalesces around only a “handful of themes”, and that one third of 70 topics assessed were “over-indexed”, meaning more content was provided on these themes than there was organic demand for it.Saturated topics included “performance”, “integration”, “equities”, and “climate change”.In contrast, the topics of measurement and materiality, supply chain transparency, active ownership and product-specific content, represented “white space” – areas where audiences’ demand for information exceeded the supply of content being provided by asset managers.“Where these topics align with firms’ core capabilities, they represent a powerful opportunity for creating brand differentiation and category authority,” wrote Peregrine.It said its “white space” framework could also help asset managers by highlighting those areas, such as active ownership, where their behaviour was likely to come under increased scrutiny.Peregrine identified the degree of saturation or “white space” by comparing the proportion of asset manager content disseminated in certain media outlets for a certain theme with the proportion of “organic interest” based on the volume of Google searches and the level of social media engagement.“These two indicators of organic audience demand are valuable in different ways as they represent two different stages in the ‘investor journey’,” wrote Peregrine.“While the social data provides insight into audience’s revealed preferences with regard to the content already extant, search data provides insight into the topics about which investors are actively seeking to find more information.“It may also illuminate themes that have been missed or ignored by asset managers altogether.” “It’s not like there’s even anything close to consensus in the market about what ESG is.” Josh Cole, head of analytics at PeregrinePeregrine did not define ESG in its report, merely referring to “environmental, social and governance investment”. According to Cole, this was deliberate.“We are purposefully agnostic on that because it’s not our place to tell investment professionals how they should be thinking about these issues,” he said.“All we can do with any level of credibility is offer guidance on where there is too much talk on topics that aren’t resonating versus ones where there is interest but nothing’s being provided.“The problem, as you know, is that it’s not like there’s even anything close to consensus in the market about what ESG is.”Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here.
David Chapman and Charlotte Hyndman at the Queenslander they have just bought in Newmarket. Image: AAP/Sarah Marshall.ANDREW Winter and Neale Whitaker know all about the headaches of renovating.As well helping hundreds of homeowners transform their rundown properties, the property guru has just spent 12 months giving his Gold Coast home a complete makeover, while the interiors expert is in the middle of refurbishing a cottage in country NSW.GET THE LATEST REAL ESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX HEREThe co-hosts of Love It Or List It Australia will battle for the hearts and heads of homeowners across the country in a new season of the show as they grapple with the dilemma of whether to renovate or sell.And while the stars sit on opposite sides of the fence on the show — Mr Winter always wants the homeowners to sell, whereas Mr Whitaker wants them to keep the property and renovate — both agree the Queenslander is for keeps.Neale Whitaker and Andrew Winter co-host a second season of Foxtel’s Love It or List It Australia.The sunshine state features heavily in the new season of Love It Or List Australia, which resumes on Foxtel on September 26.In fact, about 50 per cent of the series stars homes in the suburbs of Toowong, Corinda, Daisy Hill and Boondall in Brisbane, and Ashmore on the Gold Coast.Last financial year, Queenslanders spent $1.6 billion on home alterations and additions, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures.In Brisbane alone, residents forked out $872 million for renovations in 2017/18.‘TIME CAPSULE’ SELLS FOR MILLIONSHomeowners in Brisbane’s south splashed the most cash on upgrading their properties — spending a whopping $132.5 million, followed by Brisbane’s inner north, where homeowners spent more than $117 million.The suburb where the most money was spent on renovating in the past financial year was Paddington-Milton, with residents there forking out more than $32 million.New Farm was next, with homeowners spending $24 million on renovations, followed by Ashgrove at $22 million and Bardon at almost $21 million.Queenslanders spent $1.6 billion on home alterations and additions, according to the ABS. Image: iStock.Mr Winter said the Queenslander style home leant itself to being loved, rather than listed.“It’s only recently Queensland, and Brisbane, has taken notice of its old homes,” Mr Winter said.“The interesting thing is that the Queenslander home is probably one of the most popular forms of architecture I’ve ever come across in Australia.“I’m not saying everyone wants to own them, because of maintenance, but these days there are so many options.”INSIDE THE KARDASHIANS’ EXCLUSIVE HOLIDAY HOMEAndrew Winter on the set of Love It Or List It Australia. Picture: Tim Hunter.Mr Winter said it was hard to go wrong investing in a property that had history.“There’s nothing like an original Queenslander, so if you happen to have an original one, then you’ve got something that is likely to be really sought-after in a couple of decades,” he said.“Sydney and Melbourne’s old houses are taken seriously — really, really seriously.”Mr Whitaker agrees.“Queenslanders are up there as one of my favourite homes,” he said.“I love the architectural style — I find it so elegant and full of character and personality.”BILLIONAIRE LOSES $500K FLIPPING PENTHOUSEMr Whitaker said he loved the traditional look of the Queenslander home from the outside, with a modern interior.“They do lend themselves well to be opened out and modernised,” he said.“The layout of the Queenslander allows you to do that.”But he warned about the dangers of overcapitalising when it comes to renovating.“Really have a look at what you’ve got before you start spending big,” Mr Whitaker said.“We’ve got the renovation bug in Australia, which is great, but at the same time, it can get you in financial trouble.”Neale Whitaker, co-host of Love It Or List It Australia. Picture: Damian Shaw.David Chapman and Charlotte Hyndman have just bought their first home in the inner Brisbane suburb of Newmarket.They fell in love with the 1930s, three-bedroom character home, even though it could do with a makeover.“It’s a little rough on the outside, but on the inside there’s some really good spots in there somewhere,” Mr Chapman said.“You can’t not fall in love with a home like this.“It just has some old-world charm to it.”This character home at 14 Farm St, Newmarket, has just sold and its owners plan to renovate it.The couple plans to spend the next three to five years renovating the property with a budget of about $50,000.“There is just so much work to be done to it, but it’s all achievable — the bones of it are amazing,” Mr Chapman said.“We’ve already made 10 visits to Bunnings within three weeks of buying it.”Brisbane residents forked out $872m for home renovations in 2017/18, according to the ABS.ANDREW WINTER’S TIPS FOR RENOVATING IN QLD:*Preserve the old, rather than build new“We’ve always presumed you need to flatten it and put a slab down — that’s not the case anymore.”*Don’t put the bedrooms upstairs in a raised, two-level Queenslander“It’s a big mistake to raise and put the bedrooms upstairs because you’re hiding all the character of the original home in the bedrooms.“You need to put the living areas in the original part of the home, otherwise it’s a bit of a waste.”*Remember that even the most dreary home can be resurrected“You can install roof lights into rooms, get rid of sliding windows, and put in louvres to inject more light.“And don’t be scared of internal brickwork — you can whitewash it to perfection.”Love It Or List It Australia hosts Neale Whittaker and Andrew Winter.NEALE WHITAKER’S TIPS FOR RENOVATING IN QLD:*Consider whether you’re renovating for resale or for yourself“If you’re renovating for resale, of course you want to maximise the size and potential of the space.“The best thing you can do is keep it as neutral as possible. Allow your buyer to dream.”More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus16 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market16 hours ago*Use the climate“You have the most wonderful climate in Queensland, so maximise the light and indoor/ outdoor flow as much as possible.”*Don’t overcapitalise“It’s easy to go over budget. Look seriously at what comparable properties are going for, and what are you likely to achieve, and be realistic.“If you’re planning to sell, don’t rush out and put in a brand new kitchen or bathroom because you think you have to. Think about a spring clean before a whole scale renovation.”Many homeowners face the dilemma of whether to list their home or renovate. Image: iStock.QUEENSLAND’S RENOVATION HOT SPOTSBrisbane East: $53.6m– Capalaba $14.2m– Wynnum-Manly $26mBrisbane North: $88.6m– Bald Hills/Everton Park $10m– Kedron/Gordon Park $15.5m– Wavell Heights $11.6mBrisbane South: $132.5m– Camp Hill $11.5m– Holland Park $10.7m– Coorparoo $12.8m– Greenslopes $11.4mBrisbane West: $87.5m– Chelmer/Graceville $11.4m– Indooroopilly $10.6mBrisbane Inner: $51.2m– New Farm $24.6mBrisbane Inner East: $47.5m– Hawthorne $10.8mBrisbane Inner North: $117.7m– Ascot $13m– Clayfield $19.1m– Hamilton $12m– Wooloowin-Lutwyche $11mBrisbane Inner West: $104.5m– Ashgrove $22.1m– Auchenflower $12.4m– Bardon $20.9m– Paddington-Milton $32.1mClifton Beach, Cairns: $17mRockhampton: $17.4mBowen: $13.1mMackay: $26m(Source: ABS Building Approvals, Value of alterations and additions, FY 2017-18)
VIEWS, nature, almost complete isolation.If ever there was a bush retreat designed to get away from it all, then this one definitely fits the bill.This four-bedroom house on the Mt Mulligan Highway near Cooktown has views of the Little Annan River Gorge and the Kings Plains/Alkoomie Nature Reserve you’ll drink in as fast as that cold glass of chardy in your hand. A bedroom in 2354 Mulligan Highway, Rossville.“Guests can wander through the beautiful bushlands and along the 1km of rainforest creek, relaxing into a true rural lifestyle experience. “There’s over 30km of roads and tracks to wander along and the block sits next to the Black Mountain National Park so guests can expand their wanderings into the park.” 2354 Mulligan Highway, Cooktown, made from three shipping containers and timber milled from the property, is up for sale.The home at the junction of the Daintree Rainforest coastal road and inland route to Cairns, just 20-minutes from Cooktown and 5kms from historic Lion’s Den Hotel. More from newsCairns home ticks popular internet search terms2 days agoTen auction results from ‘active’ weekend in Cairns2 days ago2354 Mulligan Highway, Cooktown. Views from the hallway.“The land is lightly timbered and runs 250 cattle with a cattle yard and crush, plus 10km of fencing and laneways; perfect for those seeking a rural lifestyle complete with livestock and ready-made infrastructure,” the advertisement reads on www.forsalebyowner.com.au.“But, with over 5km of river frontage, natural springs, thundering waterfalls and an abundance of wildlife, this home’s true value lies in its potential. Imagine having a coldie in this deck?And you can take it all in from an expansive timber deck after fixing a pick-me-up in basic kitchen and living spaces all crafted from three shipping containers and timbers milled on the property.The home is powered by solar panels and is serviced by the property’s 130,000L water tank so living off-the-grid is assured.
The property in Rafter Country was an idyllic spot for a 108-year-old home.Two incredible sisters have tripled the value of real estate developed by tennis great Pat Rafter — thanks to a 108-year-old. Tonia Startari and Rachelle Baker landed a $1.01million cheque off property after turning around land they bought off the former world tennis champion in Rafter Country in May last year at a $17,500 discount.They paid $347,500 for the block which is a good price considering the popularity of the greater Noosa hinterland area.“We loved the Rafter Estate as soon as we drove in, rolling hills, great views, wildlife and tranquillity. It was a no brainier for us,” Ms Startari told The Sunday-Mail. MORE: Thousands fall for Facebook tiny home scam More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus15 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market15 hours ago FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOK The kitchen in the finished homeFrench doors, full length verandas, Caesarstone benchtops, a porcelain double sink and a walkin pantry were a must, as was a new type of infinity pool – a circular concrete structure that’s 4.5m in diameter. The home also has a firepit, landscaped gardens and a freestanding 40 sqm studio that could easily be used for guests if necessary.“We knew someone would fall in love with the new and improved Seabank just like we did,” Ms Startari said of the massive renovation project.The sisters were “still reeling from the physicality involved in the process and the mentally draining daily challenges, but couldn’t be prouder of the results”.Asked if they’d do it again, the answer was “perhaps”. MORE: Boom makes it Queensland’s Year of the Reno MORE: Tomic takes pay cut on home ground Rachelle and Tonia with with the house freshly positioned on the hill in Rafter country Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:30Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -1:30 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p288p288p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreen3 steps to creating a duplex01:30 The finished house in Rafter country at Eumundi“We waited with bated breath as the boys from Queensland House Removers worked their magic and got our much loved house positioned without a (new) scratch on it.”While the numbers for Seabank have not been discussed, Brisbane clients of Queensland House Removers can generally buy an old home and relocate it in the city for about $60,000, with a further $40,000 in council costs when they get to the site for things like utility connections, finishes and other approvals.The sisters went all out to bring back “all the romance of a bygone era”, restoring original features, VJ walls, timber fretwork and the hardwood floors.Their agent Richard Locke listed it on realestate.com.au as with over two acres of land and “sweeping views to Mt Cooroy in the gently rolling hills of The Rafter Estate in Eumundi township”. MORE: Yachting millionaire sells massive Riparian unit Seabank being divided into separate housesThey already had the house — a circa-1910 Gold Coast home called Seabank, which was so large it was cut into four, a quarter of which was now destined for the Rafter Country.“To be honest we never considered a new build for this location. We fell in love with the house first then searched high and low for the perfect location to sit the grand old lady Seabank.”Seabank was an enormous home built for the Hughes family in 1910 on Marine Parade and Short Street on the Gold Coast – which was divided into four in the years after it had been commandeered by the RAAF in World War II, according to . “We were quite passionate about re purposing an old heritage home and restoring it back to its original splendour. There is just something about these grand old homes we think partner so nicely with new features adding a character and ambience unsurpassed.” It was no easy task though, with “so very many challenges”.“Firstly we were working on a 110-year-old home so as you can imagine there was a surprise behind every corner. We worked closely with an amazing local builder Craig Pirret of Pirret Constructions that had the patience of a saint and helped us come up with a solution to each and every challenge. “We also chose a block of land based on view and outlook (which we love). It was basically a goat track until the very end when the landscaping had been completed. Getting building material and equipment around the site was not easy.“Not to mention getting the home from the Gold Coast to Eumundi then up and down the rolling hills of the Rafter estate to finally be winched up a 100m driveway to perch on the very top.
Pete and Sam Dossett at their new home in Camp Mountain. Image: AAP/Claudia Baxter.THE search for greener pastures is sending house prices skyward in some of the state’s best-kept lifestyle secrets, as more home hunters swap suburbia for the bush.New figures from realestate.com.au reveal a tree change has never looked so good, with little-known suburbs like Kobble Creek, D’Aguilar and Peak Crossing recording double digit house price growth over the past year — outperforming the rest of Queensland.The picturesque pocket of Mount Mee, 50km northwest of Brisbane, with its winding roads and stunning vistas, was the top suburb for house price growth in the state this year. Highest 12 month value growth for houses in 2018. Source: CoreLogic.Median values rose 37.4 per cent in the mining region to $365,398, with more than 170 houses sold there this year. Warwick, 130km southwest of Brisbane, led the nation for unit value growth, with the median apartment value jumping almost 33 per cent in the past 12 months. This acreage property at 43 Gannon St, Mount Mee, is on the market for $1.25m.And while inner-city home prices might be pushing buyers further away from city centres, the digital revolution has enabled more people to work from home.“We do find there are more people working from home, so the commute isn’t the bigger issue anymore,” Ms Pain said.And while inner-city home prices might be pushing buyers further away from city centres, the digital revolution has enabled more people to work from home.“We do find there are more people working from home, so the commute isn’t the bigger issue anymore,” Ms Pain said.The latest CoreLogic Best of the Best report for 2018 found Emerald, in Queensland’s central highlands, recorded the strongest growth in median house values in the country over the past 12 months. More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus15 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market15 hours ago CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless.Pete and Sam Dossett have just moved in to a property in Camp Mountain, which is only 16km from Brisbane’s CBD, but feels a world away.The couple paid just over $1.5 million for the property at 15 Kilgour Road, which comes with a magnificent four-bedroom, four-bathroom house with a pool, gazebo, equestrian arena and stables — all on 2.1ha and framed by panoramic mountain views. Inside the amazing house at 15 Kilgour Rd, Camp Mountain.Jamila Bagnall of Harcourts Solutions, who sold the property to the Dossetts, said few people realised how close to the city areas like Camp Mountain were.“I call it a sleeping giant because a lot of people don’t know it exists and they think it’s a long way away, whereas it’s closer (to the CBD) than Samford,” Ms Bagnall said.But she said people were starting to see the value and lifestyle benefits. “Most of them are families with children who want their children to grow up with space around them and the opportunity to have animals,” Ms Bagnall said.“Once these areas are discovered, (house) values will only continue to increase.” The median sale price for houses in Mount Mee, 50km northwest of Brisbane, jumped 51 per cent in 2018.The median sale price jumped a jawdropping 51 per cent in the 12 months to the end of November to $770,000 — the seventh highest in the country.The neighbouring suburb of Kobble Creek also posted strong growth of 26 per cent, followed by Peak Crossing in the Scenic Rim, which saw its median sale price for a house jump 24.5 per cent to a still affordable $447,000.Realestate.com.au chief economist Nerida Conisbee said it was likely that those suburbs recorded strong growth because they were off the beaten track and finally being discovered by buyers priced out of the inner-city market.“Possibly it is the fact people are just discovering them that is pushing up growth,” Ms Conisbee said.“Given they’re not well known, they might be driving more local buyers because when people look from interstate, they typically look at places with a bit more of a brand, so these are a bit more undiscovered. Highest 12 month value growth for units in 2018. Source: CoreLogic.CoreLogic head of research Tim Lawless said there was a clear trend towards lifestyle regions in Queensland, with buyer demand improving for coastal, hinterland and rural locations. “To some degree, this trend is likely being fuelled by cashed up buyers from Sydney and Melbourne who have benefitted from the surge in housing values up until recently,” Mr Lawless said. The equestrian arena at the property at 15 Kilgour Rd, Camp Mountain.Mr Dossett said they moved from the Adelaide Hills in South Australia to enjoy the Queensland climate and have a lifestyle property close to the city that would accommodate his wife’s horses, as she was a dressage competitor.“We don’t have any passing traffic and back on to Camp Mountain, so it is like living in the country but the village is five minutes away and the city only half an hour,” Mr Dossett said.“It’s awesome.” REA Group/realestate.com.au chief economist Nerida Conisbee. Vicki Pain of Ray White – Dayboro agreed.“Not many people recognise these smaller areas that years ago were little country communities,” Ms Pain said. “People often say to me; ‘Where’s Dayboro?’.”Ms Conisbee said many inner Brisbane suburbs had also become “quite expensive” in recent years, prompting buyers to look further afield.“When you have a look at some of the properties for sale around there, you can see why people are interested,” she said.“To be able to live in a four-bedroom property on 22ha with amazing views for only $1.25 million is pretty astounding.” This property at 15 Kilgour Rd, Camp Mountain, recently sold for $1.5m. This property at 15 Kilgour Rd, Camp Mountain, recently sold for $1.5m. Why a tree change never looked so good.
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This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenWhy location is everything in real estate01:59You may want to don your beer goggles and keep an open mind if you are heading to the auctions this weekend.While there are some prestigious homes scheduled to go under the hammer, there are also a few rough diamonds in some of Brisbane’s most sought-after suburbs that are expected to draw crowds on Saturday. One of those is Wilston’s own ‘ugly duckling’, which goes under the hammer at 1pm. It may be ugly but there is some potential to turn this one in to a swanRay White West End agent Luke O’Kelly said the house had been “quite polarising”.“We have either had people coming in who have loved it location and seen its potential or thought it is just too much work,” he said.“The lady who owns it has had it for about 22 years and it has been a rental for the majority of that time, with the tenants moving out about three weeks ago.“So structurally, there is nothing wrong with it.” The kitchen is, well datedThe entry level house currently has two bedrooms and one bathroom, a kitchen that opens on to the back deck, an open plan dining and living area, a sunroom and a Colonial-style bathroom.There is also a large storage area below, plus space to park a car.In Balmoral, Ray White Ascot agent Damon Warat has a “character filled home in original condition” at 62 Victoria Street. But inside it’s a blank canvas with some gorgeous traditional featuresIt goes under the hammer at 9am.“It is a very original property on top of the hill,” Mr Warat said. “It is very rare that we get one that has been untouched like this.“It really is a blank canvas.”Also scheduled to go to auction at 10am is 6 Vista Street, also in Balmoral. This post-war home is being marketed as a “fantastic opportunity” for a buyer wanting to move in, renovate or detonate the existing house. And a decent backyardMs Durant said houses nearby had sold for in excess of $1.5 million, including one just “five or six doors down”.“This one is a fantastic buy,” she said. It is close to the cityDue to the age of the property, it is understood knocking it down may not be an option, but Mr O’Kelly said it could be lifted and extended to create a bigger residence.He said the street itself was a “fantastic street”, with many of the houses opposite fetching $1.5 million-plus. This one has good bonesIt has also has views of the Gateway Bridge, and is within the sought-after Bulimba State School catchment. It is listed with Cathy Richards and Zita Durand of Place Bulimba. “It is a post-war so you can knock it down and that will likely be the intentions of a lot of people,” Ms Durand said.”Having said that, we have also had a lot of people who want to renovate it.“We just had the building and pest inspection and it is in great condition so would be a good house to do some minor work and rent out.” This one looks impressive from the streetThis one is in better shape, and is packed with period features.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus12 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market12 hours agoDescribed as “rare as hen’s teeth”, it has “good bones” and views of the CBD to the Gateway Bridge from its elevated, two lot 854sq m position. And a brown kitchenAnd in Hawthorne, Paul Swenson of Stacey Lee Realty is hoping to secure the sale of 76 Barton Street, which sits on a 852sqm block close to Oxford Street.Not much has been said about the house we will dub the Aqua Palace, but the listing does point out its fab location. There were only three images of this Hawthorne original, including this one“If location counts for anything when purchasing property (and we all know it does) picture yourself owning this prime development site, surrounded by million dollar homes,” the listing raves. It is scheduled to go to auction at 11am.
Engineering and construction giant KBR, Inc. has said it has been awarded a Project Management Services (PMC) contract by OMV Offshore Abu Dhabi GmbH on behalf of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) for work on a project offshore Abu Dhabi.KBR will be responsible for the management of the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) phase of the Hail & Ghasha Development project in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.KBR will also perform PMC services for the Detailed Engineering phase of the project under a contract awarded by Occidental of Abu Dhabi Ltd. which is jointly managing the project with OMV Offshore Abu Dhabi GmbH on behalf of ADNOC.Under the terms of the contract, KBR will provide project management consultancy services. This work is expected to be performed over 24 months.ADNOC is undertaking a project for the development of the Hail & Ghasha Gas Field in line with its objective to deliver a more sustainable and economic gas supply by implementing a fully integrated gas master plan that increases productivity, performance and delivery.The Hail & Ghasha Project, one of the largest sour gas fields projects that ADNOC is developing, is forecast to produce about 1 billion cubic feet of sour gas per day, KBR said.The infrastructure requirements for the Hail & Ghasha Project include a minimum of eleven offshore artificial islands to be designed and constructed.“KBR is very pleased to be awarded this important project in support of Abu Dhabi’s Gas Infrastructure Improvement Plan,” said Jay Ibrahim, KBR President, EMEA. “We look forward to the opportunity to reestablish ourselves amongst the UAE’s top Project Management Consultants as we continue to build on KBR’s long and successful history within the ADNOC group of companies.”“This contract demonstrates KBR’s ability to establish strong local partnerships as well as our global oil and gas capabilities for greenfield project developments in any location across the globe,” Ibrahim continued.Revenue associated with this project was undisclosed and will be booked into backlog of unfilled orders for KBR’s E&C Business Segment in the second half of 2017.