Western Sydney has dominated a list of high-growth areas where buyers can get into the market for under $350,000, but outside NSW savvy buyers are looking to regional areas.
Annual growth of up to 13.2% was recorded for one and two-bedroom units in some suburbs.
With interest rates at record lows, and murmurs of a possible rate cut ahead of the May Federal Budget, more and more home buyers and investors are looking to get into the market.
Penrith is the top suburb for annual growth in the sub-$350,000 market.
With affordability a key factor for many property seekers, we took at look at one and two-bedroom units with a maximum median price of $350,000 to find out where the highest growth suburbs are.
What the numbers show
NSW suburbs’ took out eight of the top 10 spots, with Victoria claiming the other two. Cabramatta had two showings inside the top ten, with both one and two-bedroom units recording annual growth above 10%.
Penrith emerged as the top suburb for annual growth in the sub-$350,000 market. One-bedroom units in the outer western suburbs recorded annual growth of 13.2% and sell for a median price of $295,000, according to RP data provided to realestate.com.au.
Second overall was Box Hill, in Melbourne’s east, where the median price for a one-bedroom unit is $305,000. A popular suburb with Chinese investors, Box Hill saw an annual growth rate of 10.9% in the past 12 months.
In third spot was Liverpool in southwestern Sydney. One-bedroom units in the major metropolitan centre sell for a median price of $285,000 and recorded annual growth of 10.6%.
Frankston, in Melbourne’s outer southeast, claimed second spot for annual growth in units
LJ Hooker Penrith Director of Sales Steve Thomas says recent infrastructure upgrades, plus the impending construction of Sydney’s second airport at Badgerys Creek, have contributed to high growth in Penrith.
He says units are becoming a more attractive and affordable option for first-home buyers who may not be able to commit to a higher-priced established home.
“We are seeing an emotional value being put on these units,” Thomas says.
“Previously it was just investors looking at units, so it was a completely unemotional purchase.
“These investors, if they’ve taken our advice and put in a new kitchen and bathroom, are seeing a really good sale value.”
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Get out of the city
Outside of NSW, buyers are looking beyond the major capital cities with many regional centres featuring in state-based rankings.
In Victoria, the regional centres of Bendigo and Geelong both experienced annual growth of between 7.7% and 8.5% for two-bedroom units.
In Queensland, the top five performing suburbs were in all the southern city of Toowoomba, with two-bedroom units recording annual growth of up to 5.7%.
In Western Australia, Geraldton came out on top, while in the Northern Territory it was suburbs in Alice Springs that had the best showing.
Look for units with a land component, a decent-sized courtyard
Toowoomba is proving an attractive proposition for investors
Jo Chivers, CEO of property development company Property Bloom, says regional areas offer a number of great options for those looking for units.
“Units are in demand in regional areas, usually by renters – older people wanting to downsize or young people looking for something small,” she says.
“Single parents are also quite a big part of the rental market for these types of properties.”
Chivers says in regional areas buyers should look for units close to the CBD, walking distance from schools and on local bus routes.
“Look for something with a land component, something that does have a decent-sized courtyard. People do like to have a bit of land.”
Top five suburbs by state
Rankings are based on a maximum median price of $350,000 and are for units with one or two bedrooms. Listed by suburb, unit type, annual growth, median price.
The Gap – 2bd – 3.4% – $342,000 Gray – 2bd – 2.2% – $348,000 Araluen – 2bd – 2% – $325,000 East Side – 2bd – 0.9% – $335,000 Gillen – 2bd – 0.9% – $308,000
Bruce – 1bd – 1.7% – $336,750
*limited data available for ACT
**Data source: realestate.com.au/invest. Correct at time of publication Median Sold Price is the median price for properties sold in a given suburb/postcode in the last 12 months. This analysis is limited to suburbs which have had at least 10 sold properties in the last year for a given property type/bedroom configuration. Annual Growth Rate is calculated as the compound annual growth rate in median price, comparing the median price of property sales in the preceding 12 months to the median price of properties sold in the same 12 month period 5 years ago. This is limited to suburbs which have had at least 10 sold properties in both periods for a given property type/bedroom configuration.