Why the time is now to upgrade in Melbourne
The time is now to upgrade in Melbourne.
That’s the view of industry players, who say homeowners can take advantage of cooler market conditions and price drops to save on their next step up the property ladder.
Advantage Property Consulting director Frank Valentic said median house prices had “corrected about 10-15 per cent” in the past 18 months.
“It is a great time to buy with the changeover cost and homeowners looking to upgrade could come out $250,000-$300,000 ahead,” he said.
“Upgraders are the only buyers who have upside in this market.”
Nelson Alexander Northcote agent Tom Alexiadis said “with the current drop in the marketplace” there were “big discounts on offer”.
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“People are investing more in bigger homes,” Mr Alexiadis said.
“That’s partly why we’re seeing houses of up to $3 million in Northcote.”
Mr Alexiadis said buyers who traditionally moved away from the inner north were now looking to stay.
“(Suburbs like) Thornbury and Fairfield have become such strong areas with great lifestyle attractions,” Mr Alexiadis said.
“Station and High St are becoming more popular and buyers who want to move closer to their kids are realising it’s a really cool place.
“With great schools, cafes, restaurants and public transport, it is such a convenient place to live in.”
Mr Valentic said the southeastern suburbs were particularly attractive in this market.
“Good schools are often the number one priority and Bayside has a lot of them,” he said.
“Most upgraders are looking for a blue-chip and very established inner-city lifestyle.
“They are generally not moving to the outer suburbs.”
According to a recent ING report, 51 per cent of Australian homeowners were considering an interstate move in a bid to get around the typical stresses associated with upgrading.
Their research also found that over 20 per cent of current or future home upgraders have moved or are considering a move to Melbourne
Australia’s head of retail banking at ING Melanie Evans said it was “fair to say Melbourne has never been short of great shops and exciting things to do”.
Mr Valentic said the typical upgrader with a $1.5-$2 million price bracket would also be more likely to find a double-fronted, inner-city home with a backyard in Melbourne than Sydney.
“I worked with a young family who missed out on a 250sq m block of land in northwest Sydney, with no house on it, that sold for $1.9 million,” Mr Valentic said.
“They came to Melbourne and bought a house in Ascot Vale for $990,000.
“You don’t get the same bang for your buck in Sydney.”
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