Finance Property City housing boom pushes up price of coastal properties

City housing boom pushes up price of coastal properties

Australia's beach communities are not the idylls they once were.
Australia's beach communities are not the idylls they once were. Photo: Getty
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Soaring property prices and rising interest in coastal living are pushing price rises out from our cities into once-overlooked towns and suburbs.

The issue is particularly keenly felt in communities within commuting distance of Australia’s biggest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, as locals locked out of the housing market look further afield, in turn pricing out locals.

CoreLogic senior research analyst Cameron Kusher said these areas were becoming popular as they are within striking distance of city centres. The strongest growth in coastal markets was all taking place within 150 kilometres or one to two hours drive of capital cities, he said.

New South Wales and Victoria lead coastal squeeze

Of all of Australia’s top 20 oceanside suburbs and locations in Australia, all but five were in New South Wales, with the rest in Victoria, according to numbers supplied by CoreLogic.

Young people have moved to areas like the NSW Central Coast and Newcastle, or Victoria’s Surf Coast and Mornington Peninsula, in search of affordable housing, while older people move there in search of lifestyle and properties within commuting distance.

Mr Kusher said there had been “astronomical growth” in coast-side property over the past 10 years.

“It highlights the desire for property close or near to the waterfront,” he said.

“As people come closer and closer to retirement, people will want to move to these areas.”

A consequence of rising property prices in these areas is the disruption of established communities and the pricing out of young locals, Mr Kusher said.

“The cost of owning a home increases, the underlying land increases, the rates increase,” he said.

The usual suspects roll in – retirees, and homeowners with families. The kids may still want to live in that area, but it makes it more difficult for them to buy in. People can’t live where they want to live.”

One such area is Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, which over recent years has shifted from tourist destination to commuter suburb.

Cooper and Newman Real Estate’s Greg Cooper told The New Daily areas on the Mornington Peninsula would continue rising in price beyond 2018 due to the changing demographics and tight market, all within striking distance of Melbourne.

“There’s a completely limited supply as they won’t allow subdivisions from Dromana on down,” he said.

The issue is also felt in Victoria’s Surf Coast Shire, where 47 per cent of properties are owned by people who live outside the area.

The Central Coast area of NSW has too become an outlet valve for Sydneysiders priced out of the market, with many choosing to migrate north up the M1 and across the Hawkesbury River or even further afield to Newcastle, Wollongong and the Richmond-Tweed area.

In particular, areas both popular for tourism as well as commuting, like the Surf Coast and Byron Bay area, have felt the squeeze.

Byron Shire Council director of sustainable environment and economy Shannon Burt told The New Daily the council was concerned about the effects short-stay accommodation was having on housing.

“Housing affordability in the Byron Shire continues to be a challenging issue, not just for the council but for the community generally,” she said.

But Mr Kusher predicts the coastal migration will continue as Australia ages and prices will continue to rise as baby boomers cash in on high property prices.

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