Property News

Coronavirus Operating Update from McCarthy Homes

By | Architecture, Display Homes, Property News
The impact of Covid19 continues to evolve across Queensland and the rest of Australia. We remain open for business, by appointment only and we are commited to keeping up to date with the latest safety requirements. 
Our hearts go out to anyone who’s been impacted by the virus, either directly or indirectly, and we are inspired and very grateful for the selfless healthcare workers who are working tirelessly to care for people in need.
We are commitment and ready to continue all our partnerships as we work to deliver every new home with minimal disruptions.
To all our valued customers: we want to ensure that you feel confident in our ability to create a safe environment and to provide innovative solutions to remedy any changes to our traditional new home journey.

Visiting McCarthy Homes Display Homes

All our Display Homes remain open by appointment only, and we have adopted safe practices to ensure all visits to our homes comply with the Australian Department of Health guidelines, which include:

  • personal hygiene
  • social distancing
  • regular surface cleaning

Alternatively, we are very happy to arrange virtual tours, and meetings via video conference using Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Skype or Facetime etc.

Please contact us via phone or email and our friendly Sales team will work with you to arrange a suitable meeting option that you are comfortable with. You can also view our display homes via our virtual tours which are located on the ‘Display Home” section of our website.

Click here to visit our contact page.

Click here to visit the Display Home showcase.

We are Prepared and Ready

At McCarthy Homes we have a robust and comprehensive Business Continuity Plan in place which provides excellent contingency plans that will allow our staff to operate remotely if/when required.

For all our customers who are currently in the construction stage of their new home journey, we are continuing with construction as per each schedule. We have exceptional support from our suppliers and trade partners who have worked with us to conduct rigorous supply chain reviews, and as a result of these audits, we do not foresee any risk of shortages (short to medium term). We will continue to work together to ensure that long term supply is sustained.

Changes to Operations

To help maintain our staff and clients’ health and wellbeing, all office, sales and selection meetings will be offered via email & phone or video conferencing using Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Skype or Facetime or other means.

If you do need to visit our office in-person we would ask that you contact us first and be aware that mandated social distancing rules will need to be maintained if an in-office meeting is agreed upon.

We will be vigilant in our face-to-face interactions with our clients, suppliers and contractors by following advice from the health professionals to apply social distancing and ensure that we adopt good hygiene practices. We would ask that you also follow this advice, and do not attend any sales, office/selections or on-site meetings should you or someone in your family or contact group be unwell. This will help to keep us all safe.

Please observe all guidelines and regulations put in place by the Queensland government during this time. They are the correct resource for determining how operations will continue in the future.

Questions or Concerns

It is understandable that you may have questions or concerns during this unprecedented period. We encourage you to contact us, through either our main office number, the website, or your Sales Consultant or Client Service Manager.

Please be assured that we have the resourcing, local knowledge, experienced staff and systems to partner with you to build your new home in these challenging times.

As we go forward, we’ll be sure to keep you updated, and know that we always value your questions, ideas and feedback.

Click here to visit our contact page.

Or, call us on (07) 3358 9704

Construction Index Hits lowest since 2013

Construction Index at its lowest since 2013

By | Property News
Construction Index Hits lowest since 2013
The Australian Performance of Construction Index (Australian Construction PMI) saw a small decline in December of 2019 to mark 16 straight months of contraction. The month of December saw the index slip to 38.9 from 40 in November.

A falling construction index is a fairly powerful indicator of the health of the Australian economy in general and can act as a forward indicator for flow-on investment in other areas. For us at McCarthy Homes, however, there was a silver lining to that cloud. Housing construction, a specific area within the broader construction index, saw a slight rise. This bodes well for housing, particularly the niche in which we operate, and means that we can continue to build and hand over beautiful Hampton style homes for our clients.

What are the knock-on effects?

Ask 10 different economists how construction investment and overall numbers impact the economy and you’ll receive 15 different answers. Some of the knock-on effects of a downturn in housing construction specifically that we have seen espoused include:

  • Reduction in house prices: This seems paradoxical, as one would expect a downturn in supply to cause an increase in prices. However, it appears that the same factors that lead to a lower dwelling construction numbers also have an impact on overall demand for housing. It is somewhat a chicken and egg situation.
  • Reduction in consumer spending: Housing market shocks of almost any description often have impacts on consumer spending levels. As many people view construction numbers as a bellwether for the broader Australian economy, a downturn here may be seen as a sign that it’s time to tighten the belt.
  • Reduction in business confidence: The above can also be said for business confidence. This can have the knock-on effect of reducing business investment in new premises, which can further exacerbate a construction downturn.
  • RBA action: The housing market plays a role in the Reserve Bank of Australia’s decision-making. While it is oft said that their remit remains exclusively around monitoring inflation levels, recent years have seen their scope to expand assessment of, and action on, employment, housing and more. Interest rate decisions are made in a very macro context.
  • Impacts on other industries: Large changes in construction numbers, housing prices and other major economic purchases can have a flow-on effect to big ticket items like car and holiday purchases.
  • Changes in employment patterns: A construction downturn may impact the hiring practices of construction firms, with strong potential for reduced hiring rates.

Which states are building houses?

Depending on the data you look at (monthly fluctuations are normal and can be considerate), Sydney and Melbourne approached the final quarter of the 2019 calendar year with some slight increases to housing construction. Building permits nationwide were down month-on-month by 0.2% in December, although that was on the back of a very busy November.

All things considered, there is significant upside potential for all Australian states, although growth in construction approvals and house prices are likely to be very localised. Southeast Queensland is likely to remain an attractive proposition for those seeking capital gains in housing outside of the overheated Sydney and Melbourne markets.

Building approvals

In December 2019, the total dwelling units approved was down 5.9% on December 2018. This data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics illustrates a slight downturn in the home construction industry, although it must be taken in context. After several years of aggressive growth and rapid increases in dwelling approvals, a downturn of 5.9% doesn’t represent a major downshift for the industry, but rather the addition of some volatility and a possible return to more sustainable levels of growth.

Why houses are performing so well

Housing bounced 0.8 points to 50.8, in growth territory rather than contraction. Of the four construction sectors measured, housing shows the strongest signs of stability and potential growth. Australia has seen the housing boom maintained for over a decade. While there have been plenty of small blips, that long upwards trend has proven quite resilient.

There is no telling what happens in the future, but it’s worth reflecting on the reasons Australia’s housing market, including both construction numbers and overall prices, has seen such strong performance. The likely explanation is a combination of cheap debt and overpriced assets elsewhere, making housing more attractive. However, identifying direct causes for a macro trend is almost impossible.

What should you do?

Always seek the advice of a professional before you make significant financial commitments, such as purchasing a home or arranging the construction of a new house. We are not financial professionals, but we can assist you in finding someone who may be able to provide you with advice, or we can provide general advice.

Click here to contact us.

sunshine coast property market growth

The Sunshine Coast – A Diverse, Growing Economy

By | Property News
sunshine coast property market growth
The Sunshine Coast is on the cusp of a huge economic boom. Significant investment in the region by local, state and federal governments, coupled with private business investment, is positioning the Sunshine Coast as the next fastest-growing regional centre in Australia. We’ve taken a dive into some of the major factors that are likely to contribute to the Sunshine Coast’s rise over the next decade.

Olympics bid

South-East Queensland’s bid to host the 2032 Olympic Games is likely to drive significant investment in local infrastructure throughout the region. The Sunshine Coast stands to benefit from this investment, particularly as the current Queensland State Government seems committed to spreading events from the Whitsundays down to the Gold Coast.

Due to recent changes instituted by the International Olympics Committee, regions are now able to make bids for the games, which makes South-East Queensland’s bid far more likely to succeed. It also ensures that whichever government is in power during preparation for the games is more likely to allocate funding throughout the region, which stands to benefit the Sunshine Coast.

Infrastructure boom

The Sunshine Coast is currently undergoing a significant infrastructure boom that will better position it to handle upcoming population growth throughout the 2020s and 2030s.

Maroochydore CBD Development

Maroochydore is positioning itself as one of Australia’s largest and fastest-growing urban centres. A complete redevelopment of the new CBD will cement Maroochydore’s position as the hub of the Sunshine Coast, with closer proximity to Asian trading partners and a high-speed data connection providing it with independent access to the rest of the world.

Sunshine Coast Airport Expansion

The Sunshine Coast Airport is undergoing significant investment in a new runway and requisite infrastructure to boost capacity and improve exposure to the wider world. The new runway is expected to be completed in 2020 and will greatly improve tourism and work accessibility.

Sunshine Coast Health Precinct

The Sunshine Coast Health Precinct, incorporating the Sunshine Coast Health Institute, Sunshine Coast University Hospital and Sunshine Coast University Private Hospital, constitutes one of the largest ongoing health infrastructure investments in the country. Expectations are for the Health Precinct to drive around $447 million per year in contributions to the Sunshine Coast economy.

Other projects

There are major new residential developments the length of the Sunshine Coast, in addition to accompanying commercial developments that are being constructed to serve both existing needs and future requirements. New technology precincts will serve to take full advantage of the submarine cable that is connecting the Sunshine Coast with the wider world.

Employment growth

All of this investment and development is accompanied by an enormous jobs boom that is unlikely to die down. As construction jobs arise during the infrastructure development phase, more roles will follow as businesses and workers shift into the new technology, health and commercial districts. This cycle of investment and job creation is likely to last long into the future as the Sunshine Coast continues to grow, creating a self-fulfilling loop of investment and growth.

Shifting economy

The Sunshine Coast, a region once largely reliant on tourism, is rapidly accelerating towards a diversified future with a host of different industries taking centre stage. Health and technology are likely to play a large role in the future of the Sunshine Coast. As the local economy continues to strengthen and attract a range of business types, economic conditions will continue to improve and become vastly more robust.

As the economy diversifies, it will attract new residents and the continued demand for employees will place upwards pressure on residential real estate prices. The state government recognises this and appears committed to driving continued growth in the Sunshine Coast region in an effort to more evenly spread population growth throughout south-east Queensland rather than concentrating it in existing high-density areas.

Population shifts

The Sunshine Coast is experiencing significant population shifts. While in the past it was home to a slightly older population than many other areas in south east Queensland, recent years have seen a slight shift in the demographics of the region towards younger age brackets. As employment opportunities in the area continue to grow, this demographic shift is likely to become more pronounced.

The bottom line

The Sunshine Coast is Australia’s ninth most populous region. It’s attracting more investment than ever before. This huge boom in infrastructure investment is driving employment growth, further residential investment and a bright future for the region. Now is an excellent time to dive into the Sunshine Coast property market, whether as an investment purchase or a forever home – the Sunshine Coast has something for everyone.

north lakes home price record

A McCarthy Home just set a Price Record

By | Property News
north lakes home price record
Here at McCarthy Homes, we don’t measure the value of our homes by their price. We measure them by the value they add to the lives of our customers. Our homes are painstakingly designed, refined and redesigned to maximise familial comfort and ease of living. Our designers focus on the minutest details to ensure that everyone who lives in a McCarthy Home has a great time. It’s easy enough to notice when a home is designed poorly. However, when it’s designed well, you rarely notice a thing – it just fits perfectly as part of your surrounds.

Living in a McCarthy Home is an everyday pleasure, and that’s the way we like it. We ensure our homes are affordable, because everyone deserves to live in a home that is perfect for them. When it comes to the price of a sale after a home has had its first owner, that’s not a concern of ours. It’s not the money that matters, it’s the years upon years, the decades, of shared memories and experiences within the walls.

However, the housing market certainly measures value with dollars. Pleasingly, the housing market in North Lakes recently determined that the most valuable home in the suburb was a McCarthy Home.

16 Kennedy Court, constructed fewer than ten years ago, is a unique custom build by McCarthy Homes. It follows all the design principles present in every single McCarthy Home. Designed to maximise comfort and encourage communal living, it boasts flowing living areas and a central kitchen that’s perfect for family cooking sessions. There’s nothing worse than an isolated kitchen, and 16 Kennedy Court maximises the central importance of the kitchen, the centre of every home.

The kitchen features a large marble island directly in the centre. It’s complimented by stained timber surrounds and elsewhere throughout the property, ensuring a perfect design flow that makes you feel right at home, exactly where you belong, anywhere in the house.

While an excellent home design means more than anything else when it comes to comfort, liveability and sophistication, some great views can really add to the equation. 16 Kennedy Court has outstanding views in spades, overlooking the North Lakes Resort Golf Course in a stunning panorama of the best that Brisbane’s north side has to offer.

Stepping outside the home, 16 Kennedy Court offers an impressive backyard and swimming pool area. With a direct view to the golf course from the swimming pool and outdoor living area, it’s a great spot to relax and soak up the atmosphere.

Quality over all else

Our homes are built to last. True value and lasting home security are delivered through extremely stringent standards and high build quality. Extensive consultation between our designers and construction team ensures that the final product perfectly fits the requirements of the first homeowner while respecting the best practices we have developed through years of home building.

Ageless grace

Alongside building for quality, we build for timeless sophistication. Home trends come and go, but ageless grace is a quality that lasts forever. A McCarthy Home is built to last, both in structural soundless and appearance. Internally and externally, all McCarthy Homes exude an aura of grace and sophistication that permeates throughout generations.

16 Kennedy Court perfectly encapsulates the core design principles of McCarthy Homes. Superior inclusions throughout the home (in this case, upgraded at the owners’ insistence), refined finishes in every room and an atmosphere that ensures every resident and guest feels immediately at home.

The sale price

16 Kennedy Court set a suburb record for North lakes with a pre-auction sale price of $1,550,000. Marketed and sold by Darren Suhle of Ray White North Lakes, it was fantastic to see a McCarthy Home deliver the highest price ever for a house in North Lakes.

As we’ve stated, it’s not about the price, it’s about value. The home was purchased by a local family living nearby. We hope that upon moving in, they enjoy the best that McCarthy Homes has to offer and come to share many great memories within those walls.

The future of McCarthy Homes

This sale only serves to reinforce the principles that underlie everything we do at McCarthy Homes. We will continue to hire the best designers and builders  to deliver on the unique requirements of all of our valued clients.

Do you want to learn more about our processes, or would you like to speak with us about your options for designing, building or purchasing a home? Please get in touch, we’re happy to chat about your home requirements and help in any way we can.

domain property price report june commentary

Domain Property Forecast – What it Tells Us

By | Property News
domain property price report june commentary
Domain opens their June property report with a broad, bold statement – prices will flatten, on average, across our capital cities throughout the remainder of 2019, before reversing slightly and beginning an upturn in 2020. This is largely in line with expectations of other market observers and the general feel of market sentiment that we’ve been seeing (although we never like to make big calls based on a “feel” alone).

Domain have revised down their own predictions based on a slower start to the year than expected, attributed to ongoing fallout from the royal commission into the financial services sector, economic headwinds and uncertainty around the election and the economy broadly. We’ve broken down their report. It makes for some interesting reading.

Why the turnaround next year?

There have been a few big changes (and some yet to come) over the past couple of months that bode well for the property market – and Domain, like everyone else, has picked up on it.

Interest Rates

Money is getting cheaper, mortgage rates are dropping, and it’s getting easier and easier for people to get the financing they need to buy their first home or purchase an investment property.

APRA Lending Rules

In May, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) changed its standards surrounding loan serviceability. Rather than loan providers assessing mortgagees on their ability to repay loans at a rate of 7% (regardless of their actual rate), they are now recommended to assess loan serviceability at a rate of 2.5% above the actual rate – so as interest rates continue to drop, the number of people who may be considered able to meet their repayment obligations will increase. This will open up the housing market to new entrants, and more demand (in the absence of considerations of supply) tends to have only one effect on prices.

The Election and New Policy

The federal election eased a lot of uncertainty around housing, particularly with regard to negative gearing. Easing the fears of property investors and locking in certainty for the next few years should help to address some of the underlying turmoil in the housing market and will help reinforce the price floor (possibly higher than it otherwise would have been) once clearances and prices stop declining.

The Capitals

Our attention is often drawn to the capital cities when we’re analysing property price shifts, and rightly so – that’s where the bulk of our population lives. Australia-wide, Domain is calling a 1% increase in property prices by the end of the year (we’re willing to write this off as a rounding error – let’s call it flat) and a 2-4% increase throughout 2020. There may be minor downturns over the next couple of months, but by year’s end, Domain contends, we should see flat-to-positive price performance for 2019 as a whole. This data is reflected across the capital cities, broken down below:



2019 – 2%

2020 – up to 5%


2019 – 2%

2020 – up to 4%



2019 – 1%

2020 – up to 3%


2019 – 1%

2020 – up to 2%



2019 – 1%

2020 – up to 5%


2019 – 0%

2020 – up to 2%

Interestingly, Domain is predicting that Brisbane apartments may see zero growth in prices throughout both 2019 and 2020 – with a maximum of 2% growth next year. Houses, on the other hand, have a very positive outlook.



2019 – 0%

2020 – up to 2%


2019 – 0%

2020 – up to 2%



2019 – 1%

2020 – up to 3%


2019 – 2%

2020 – up to 3%



2019 – 0%

2020 – up to 4%


2019 – 2%

2020 – up to 5%

It’s very interesting to see a flatter prediction for Hobart house prices this year than Sydney or Melbourne. Domain places some emphasis on increased supply for their justification here.



2019 – 2%

2020 – up to 6%


2019 – 1%

2020 – up to 3%

Some Words of Caution

Domain concludes their report with an outline of some of the risks to their price forecasts. Upside risks include a stronger turnaround in investor sentiment than expected, a diving unemployment rate (combined with interest rate cuts) increasing wages and investment, and unexpected interest rate cuts.

The downside risks outlined by Domain include slower global growth than unexpected (possibly driven by an escalation in the trade war) and the potential for a rise in unemployment due to a construction downturn – somewhat of a double whammy. Further, investor sentiment might not respond as expected to the June rate cut and predicted July/August rate cut, resulting in flatter than expected prices or a delayed rebound.

The Big Picture

We’re facing interesting times ahead, but the fundamentals are reasonably healthy. Outside of retail, most of the Australian economy is chugging along at a modest rate. The property market isn’t diving, it’s correcting. We can expect to see more money continue to find its way into the market as the cost of borrowing becomes cheaper throughout the end of 2019. All things considered, now is a fantastic time to dive right in.


McCarthy Homes New Website Blog Banner

McCarthy Homes has a New Website

By | Property News
McCarthy Homes New Website Blog Banner
Our brand-new website launched just recently and we couldn’t be more pleased to share it with you. The new website has been in development for months and we are extremely happy to see the finished result, we think that you will agree that it is both easy to use and beautiful!

The new McCarthy Homes website was designed from the ground-up to deliver an exceptional experience for our valued clients.


Some time ago, we recognised that our old website did not adequately reflect our brand. We construct beautiful homes that are a pleasure to behold, yet our website failed to communicate this effectively. So, the journey towards a new website began.

The Process

Our website design process began with intensive discovery sessions with our development teams. We had to delve deeply into what makes McCarthy Homes the respected and sought-after brand that it is today. It was insightful for all involved, and gave us renewed respect for our own brand, as well as a better understanding of our failure to adequately communicate who we are and how we should go about that moving forward.

What followed was months of design and website development. Throughout the process tweaks and changes were made based on user feedback, development hurdles and ongoing discovery.

The final stage of this arduous process, the reveal to the public, will be the true test of the quality of our new website.

Functionality and User Experience 

The new McCarthy Homes website leaves nothing behind that our previous website offered. We still maintain a range of functionality, including the ability to view house plans, sign up for our newsletter, interact socially and much more.

The major changes lie in our user experience. A far more intuitive navigation structure, smoother edges across the whole site and a simple experience ensure that using the new McCarthy Homes website is a pleasure rather than a chore.

Experience it Now

Please go ahead and explore the website. We welcome all feedback, however we are quite sure that you’ll have a great time navigating through a new site that we are immensely proud of.

June Rate Cuts and Quarterly GDP Results – What it means for new home builders

By | Property News
By Nicholas O’Sullivan – General Manager

Yesterday saw Governor Lowe announce a rate cut to 1.25%, subsequently passed on in full by both the Commonwealth Bank and National Bank. The other two majors passed on a little less, with ANZ making the argument that it was starting from a point of lower rates anyway. Either way, it’s good news for those already holding a mortgage.

Today, GDP growth for the March quarter was announced as 0.4%. As a general measure of economic health, the GDP is fairly reliable (we won’t delve into a debate about declining GDP per capita here). Again, presumably, this is good news for those already holding a mortgage. Economic activity increases, and with any luck the buoyant tide lifts all boats, ensuring that those monthly payments are going towards an asset that is increasing in value.

How does the Rate Cut affect those looking to build a new home?

The rate cut will be very welcomed by those who are already in a mortgage, delivering average savings of around $700 a year for those holding a mortgage of $400,000. It’s a healthy amount of money, but it’s overshadowed by Treasure Frydenberg’s gift of $1080 apiece to around ten million taxpayers. Taken together, they are a healthy boon for those saddled with a loan.

However, for those looking at building a new home, this news is equally welcome. Reduced rates on a construction home loan and then a standard loan can only mean one thing – more flexibility in lifestyle and more choice. Whether you use the additional money to pay down the loan, push it into an offset account, or buy some new furniture for your new home, that money eases the load and gives you the freedom to act how you wish.

How do the GDP results affect those looking to build a new home?

The quarterly GDP results were slightly below many projections, but in the same ballpark. This is positive news, as we’re seeing an uptick from the previous two quarters which, annualised, point to a slight recovery in an economy that was otherwise starting to lag somewhat. Nevertheless, the outlook over the next two years is relatively flat, with no major movements in GDP figures expected.

For those people who have been steadily growing their deposit and are looking to take out a loan to build a home, a boost in GDP growth comes with benefits. On the bright side, it provides a slight boost to the housing market, meaning that they’ll be buying into an asset class that will likely see renewed interest from investors and other first-home buyers. As a further benefit, home builders won’t be competing directly with those looking to buy an established home.

Additionally, first-home builders may experience the added benefit of an increase in their own income, depending on the line of work they’re in. As economic activity increases and more money flows throughout the economy, those with elastic incomes are likely to see a rise in the money coming their way.

What’s the big picture? 

The big picture is a net positive for new home builders. If you’re in the market to build a new home, lower interest rates and cheaper loans give you a better chance of getting your foot in the door, may help increase the amount you can borrow, and ensures that you aren’t spending the first period of home ownership drowning in eye-watering repayments.

Coupled with a growing economy, the picture ahead is looking good. The RBA has hinted that based on their projections of slower than usual growth (and subsequently lower than ideal inflation), they’ll likely make the next rate move downwards, possibly before the end of the year (and possibly as soon as August).

If we see the next quarter of GDP growth beat expectations (more likely than not, in my opinion), it will be even further positive news for everyone in the new housing market – either on the buy side or sell side. However, it’s worth pulling the trigger sooner rather than later. Those low interest rates are only going to add fuel to the housing industry.

Look out for headwinds

Of course, looking at two factors in isolation rarely tells the full story. There is a lot more at play in the construction of new housing, one of Australia’s largest industries. Making your investment or home building decisions based solely on an uptick in GDP growth and a simultaneous cut to interest rates isn’t something we’d recommend. Make sure you’re comfortable in your financial situation and can afford to take such a big step.