• How to spot an up and coming suburb

    How to spot an up and coming suburb

    A suburb simply doesn’t become ‘popular.’ There are triggers which determine why a suburb starts to become known as a hot-spot. Some of these can be price related where a suburb clearly becomes attractive as adjoining suburbs continue to rise in market value, or where new road developments now provide easier access.

    Firstly, when considering an emerging suburb, identify areas where the gentrification is alive and well. These are areas that are commanding premium prices, which now have restricted affordability. Then start valuating neighbouring or bordering suburbs, and the potential lifestyle and appeal of these areas too.

    Many of the neighbouring areas may be divided by a major arterial road, train line or waterway, and subsequently they may not have enjoyed the same regard or appeal as their more popular neighbouring suburb. I call these suburbs the ‘bridesmaids’. They are often overlooked for the ‘prettier’ more desirable postcodes but can often offer real value in comparison to the more popular areas.

    Perhaps local industry and manufacturing dominated the area which prevented quality housing or where smaller block sizes were initially released, modest housing styles emerged and have since characterised the area and have held values back until now.

    An example is Camberwell in Melbourne where good education, parks, shopping and well serviced transportation under-pins strong property values.

    However, just five kilometres down the road from the Camberwell Town Hall is Ashburton, with its mix of modest period timber bungalow homes and 1940’s government housing.

    Buyers who are unable to afford high priced Camberwell or Malvern, have started to realise the appeal and far more affordable option in Ashburton, with most of the local amenities still within easy reach.

    Cultural or ethnic groups can re-define an emerging suburb. Professional workers have driven medium density living and the re-development of our inner urban industrial enclaves, seeking lower home maintenance and a focus on lifestyle. As new populations and investment spill into these new areas, quality housing redevelopment takes over and the general appeal and local amenity continues to increase.

    Before we know, the secret is out. We have a hot-spot!

    Some examples of up and coming suburbs include:

    In Melbourne In Sydney In Brisbane
    Ashburton Macquarie Fields Fortitude Valley
    Carnegie Redfern West End
    Altona Rozelle Paddington

    About the author

    • Andrew Wilson

      Dr. Andrew Wilson, Senior Economist for Fairfax-owned Australian Property Monitors and Domain.com.au is our numbers man on The Great Australian Dream. As a leading commentator on the Australian property market, specialising in housing market analysis, Andrew has a strong following with weekly columns in the Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne Age.

      Throughout the series, Andrew will help home buyers understand what the numbers really mean and reveal the forces driving the Australian property market whilst breaking down the jargon along the way. Dr Andrew Wilson has previously held senior property and construction research positions within industry, academia and government as well as holding a PhD and Masters in Research in Housing Market Economics.

      Andrew Wilson

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