The Allure of Coastal Lifestyles
The COVID pandemic has seen a reassessment of many aspects of our lives, including where we live. No longer is being located in close proximity to CDB’s or the work office a priority for many Australian’s when choosing where to live. With remote and hybrid work structures the new norm, research by realestate.com.au (REA), Australia’s largest property search engine, has found that coastal, outer suburbs, and regional areas are increasingly popular with serious and highly engaged buyers. Across the Sunshine Coast, we have seen a huge surge in interest from Brisbane buyers and interstate buyers.
People are now looking for more space and lifestyle opportunities. The big driving force behind this is the fact that many of us no longer need to commute daily to the work office. Another aspect of this shift is that throughout the pandemic many have reassessed what’s important in life, and certain health, family, and lifestyle opportunities have been prominent. Lifestyle perks, scenic coastlines, and being closer to nature to enjoy more outdoor activities are very much in high demand. And the Sunshine Coast offers a mountain of opportunities for those previously bound to city lifestyles.
Buderim, considered the bellybutton of the Sunny Coast, was the second most sort after suburb nationally with REA noting that there were 45,065 highly active buyers looking to purchase there during the year. Demand on views per listings is 50% higher than the same time last year across the board, according to realestate.com.au. Many suburbs on the Sunshine Coast have seen a spike in buyer demand this year. We’ve seen an increase of interstate interest by 15 to 25%. Even our hinterland townships are on the search list with Coes Creek recording a 26.3% year-on-year increase in demand, Woombye up 21.2%, and Palmwoods demand a whopping 56% surge.
People are also more attracted to properties that offer space and lifestyle advantages. A house with a pool or room for a pool, yard space for the kids, and room for a garden are highly sort after. Being that many are now working remotely while one office is essential many now need two or even three office spaces for the family. Additional living areas indoors are ideal and space for a workshop, studio, and gym are big pluses.
We will no doubt see more migration and growth in Queensland for at least the next 6 to 12 months. Melbourne and Sydney buyers continue to seek properties in regional areas and interstate, with ABS reporting that in the first quarter of 2021 a total of 11,800 people left our capital cities in favour of regional areas. Since the beginning of the pandemic, a total of 40,000 people has been said to have left Sydney. Brisbane alone has gained a total of 16,300 people since the start of the pandemic and Queensland 22,800 people in the 12 months leading to the end of June. The ABS the Sunshine Coast will swell by approximately 8,300 persons per year.
With the current situation in Victoria and NSW, I expect we will see many more buyers making the decision to call our Sunshine State, home over the next several months. The greatest challenge for regional communities like us here on the Sunny Coast will be our ability to keep up with the unprecedented rapid rate of growth and of course housing availability to keep up with the ever-increasing demand.