For those looking for the Great Australian Dream, yes, the affordable family home still exists in all corners of Australia.
With purse strings tight around the country, buyers looking for the perfect balance of lifestyle and affordability are having to search further afield to achieve these goals.
Anne Flaherty, economist at realestate.com.au, says higher interest rates, lower stock and increased property prices over the last few years have altered buyers’ mindsets.
“We have seen people searching at more affordable price categories than they were 12 – 18 months ago,” she says.
“The average home buyer has had their borrowing capacity slashed by about 25% due to interest rate rises… people are having to compromise to get into the market.”
Buyers can still find their dream 4-bedroom home by looking at areas further afield. Picture: Getty
While this may mean looking at homes in areas within your means, Flaherty says: “What we’ve typically seen is that the more affordable areas have fewer price falls than the more expensive areas.”
She believes this may be due to higher demand in more affordable areas, which she says is “making prices more resilient” in these up-and-coming suburbs.
Whilst you can save on home prices in these more affordable areas, it’s still important to factor in other costs such as home and contents insurance. Ensure you’re seeking out the best value on your insurance too.
After all, your home is one of the most important assets you’ll ever own. Whilst price may play a large role, it’s worth choosing an insurer you can trust to provide the right level of coverage should something unfortunate happen.
A home insurer like AAMI has been trusted by Aussies for over 50 years, even winning the Canstar Award for Outstanding Value for Home & Contents Insurance 2022.
Plus, AAMI provides a $50 discount when you quote and buy AAMI Home and Contents Insurance online, offering protection for your home and contents in the event of loss or damage caused by fire, theft, storms, and a range of other insured events, that may otherwise leave you out of pocket.*
- Mildura, Northwest Victoria – $530,000
- Leongatha, South Gippsland – $700,000
- Mount Duneed, Geelong – $825,000
- Ferntree Gully, Outer East Melbourne – $950,000
- Seaford, Melbourne – $962,722
In the country’s arts capital, you can still find a modern family house with plenty of amenities nearby for under $1 million.
Seaford, a beachside suburb in the outer southeast, is perfect for those looking to settle into the coastal lifestyle while still getting into the CBD in under an hour, while Mount Duneed provides a community vibe amongst wineries just 20 minutes out of the Geelong CBD.
Many Melburnians have migrated to Geelong and surrounds, enticed by the relaxed lifestyle. Picture: Getty
Rounding out Victoria are Mildura, a holiday hotspot on the Murray River; Leongatha, situated in Gippsland’s dairy country; and Ferntree Gully at the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges.
New South Wales
- Dubbo, Orana Region – $635,000
- Blue Haven, Central Coast- $800,000
- Coffs Harbour, North Coast – $860,000
- Port Macquarie, Mid North Coast – $960,000
- Guildford, Sydney – $990,111
While Sydney has a reputation for expensive property, there are still some areas across the state where you can grab a family home for a steal.
“It comes down to the needs of the homebuyer,” Flaherty says.
“If you’re purchasing a family home, make sure that you know there’s access to good schools, good parks, childcare facilities.”
This can be found in the Guildford region in Paramatta, which is home to shops, schools, public transport, and parklands.
If you’re looking for a sea change, Port Macquarie in the state’s north is full of beaches, wildlife, natural beauty, and local CBD.
Affordability and lifestyle offerings in Port Macquarie are catching the eye of buyers. Picture: Getty
“People really focus on those lifestyle aspects when deciding where to live,” Flaherty says.
Rounding out the list are the beachside areas of Blue Haven, Coffs Harbour, and the regional city of Dubbo.
- Yamanto, Ipswich – $562,000
- Caloundra West, Sunshine Coast – $807,500
- Tingalpa, Brisbane – $895,000
- Palm Cove, Cairns – $936,000
- McDowall, Brisbane North – $980,000
Known as one of Australia’s favourite holiday destinations, Palm Cove still offers family-style living under the million-dollar price tag, with Tingalpa and McDowall two family-friendly suburbs within a 30-minute drive of the CBD.
Yamanto and Caloundra West are 60 – 80 minutes out of Brisbane, which could be attractive to those with hybrid working arrangements.
“Since the pandemic, more people are able to work flexibly and remotely, which means that commute time is not as much of an issue as it used to be,” Flaherty says.
“And because of that, people are willing to live further away from their places of work.”
- Wallaroo, Barossa – $420,000
- Munno Para West, Adelaide – $490,000
- Mount Gambier, Limestone Coast – $501,000
- Craigmore, Adelaide- $535,000
- Wynn Vale, Adelaide – $766,000
Feel like becoming a sommelier? Make your dream a reality with a four-bedroom for $420,000 in Wallaroo.
On the other side of the coast, you can still catch a bargain in Mount Gambier for around $500,000, known as much for its natural beauty as its small-town charm.
Imagine having the rolling hills of the Barossa Valley as your backyard. Picture: Getty
In the capital city of Adelaide, four-bedders are still available in the six-figure mark in the areas of Wynn Vale, Munno Para West, and Craigmore, which all consist of local amenities within 40 minutes of the CBD.
- Queens Park, Perth – $530,000
- Margaret River, Southwest WA – $670,000
- Cable Beach, Broome – $805,000
- Ocean Reef, Perth – $945,000
- Coogee, Perth – $980,000
The sunniest state still offers family homes in some of the most beautiful places on Earth.
Up in Broome, you can find a family home on the famed Cable Beach for $805,000; while holiday makers can decide never to leave the wine region of Margaret River at $670,000.
If the aim is to stay within the Perth region, areas like Coogee, Queens Park and Ocean Reef can offer the coastal lifestyle while still getting you in the CBD in under 30 minutes.
- Devonport – $575,000
- Kingston (Greater Hobart) – $915,000
- Legana (Launceston) – $757,500
More focused on the regions as opposed to suburbs, Tasmania still offers family gems across Hobart and Launceston with the largest range of four-bedroom housing.
While it has been a hotspot for Victorians flying south, Tasmania has a range of affordable suburbs across the state, with a median house price around $862,000.
Despite mass migration during the pandemic, Tasmania still remains one of the most affordable states in the country. Picture: Getty
Areas such as Bridgewater or Georgetown have four bedders under $500,000; while Ulverstone on the state’s north coast still has homes under $700,000.
- Rosebery, Palmerston – $583,000
- Durack, Palmerston – $625,000
- Zuccoli, Palmerston- $630,000
- Bellamack, Palmerston – $650,000
- Muirhead, Darwin – $748,500
If you’re keen to settle down in the top end, Muirhead, a 20-minute drive from Darwin’s CBD, is a suburb filled with local amenities such as shops, schools, parks, and walking tracks, while the area of Zuccoli offers a family-friendly aesthetic with schools, childcare, shops, and open spaces for $630,000.
Rounding out the Outback are Bellamack, Rosebery and Durack, community-focused neighbourhoods just under 30 kilometres out of Darwin.