Thinking of a tree or a sea change?

Here’s why regional Australia could be a hot favourite among buyers during Coronavirus.

Article published: 11 November 2020

There’s a lot to love about regional Australia - more affordable property values, wide open spaces and a relaxed pace of life. The appeal of regional living has enjoyed an upswing during COVID-19, buoyed by the trend to remote working and lower population density.

As a growing number of Australians re-asses their work-life balance during the pandemic, we look at why a tree or sea change is becoming a popular choice.

Regional areas have strong appeal

The days when moving to a regional location meant giving up good coffee are over.  Regional cities and townships are thriving, and along with less congestion, improved transport links and a wealth of local facilities, one of the key points of appeal is more affordable home values. 

CoreLogic figures show that at 30 September, the median home value across the combined regional areas of Australia was $397,791 - that’s 37% less than the combined capital city median of $635,1961.

Other aspects of regional living, including shorter commutes, less crowding, and no problems finding a parking spot, add to the quality of life in regional areas. As many newcomers from the city quickly discover that regional neighbourhoods are warm and welcoming, with a strong sense of community.  

The pandemic may have enforced the need to work from home, but it has made more people realise that the daily commute may not be so essential. Working remotely is achievable, and this is opening up the possibility of shifting out of the city and into regional locations. 

Migrating to regional areas is not unique to COVID19

The dream of enjoying a more peaceful country lifestyle is something many Australians have already acted on.

The 2020 Big Movers reports from the Regional Institute Australia, shows that in the five years to 2016, more than 1.2 million people either moved to regional Australia or moved around regional Australia from one location to another2.

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COVID-19 regional property market update with CoreLogic - a state by state breakdown

Hear from Eliza Owen, Head of Australian Research at CoreLogic, as she helps to shed some light on the property market trends amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Watch our video where Eliza explains how COVID-19 has affected Australians choosing to live in regional areas.

Regional markets have continued to out-perform relative to the capital cities

Interestingly, the research also found most people who left a city for the regions stayed within their respective state.

In the three months to 30 September 2020, regional values rose 0.5% compared to a 1.5% decline in values across the nation’s state capitals3.

CoreLogic explains this, saying, “We are observing a transition of demand away from the cities towards the major regional centres, particularly those that are adjacent to the larger capitals where residents can commute back to the cities if required. 

He adds, “Remote working arrangements are no doubt a factor in supporting demand in these (regional) markets, but lifestyle opportunities and a desire for lower density housing options are also playing a part.”

Now’s the time to get expert advice

There are so many important factors to keep in mind when making a decision as significant as relocating. Whether it's access to hospitals, schools, banks, universities and so on. Making the move from a big city to a regional area is a personal decision, and the motives to do so will differ for each individual and household. 

At the end of the day, it's important that you make the right life and financial choice for your future. 

At Mortgage Choice, when it comes to finding a lending solution that’s right for you our local brokers are here to help provide you with the expert advice you need to get you started on your journey.

Posted in: Property market

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1 CoreLogic Hedonic Index as at 1 October 2020
3  CoreLogic Hedonic Index as at 1 October 2020