1010The biggest expat population of 1.3 million Brits live in Australia, drawn by a great outdoor lifestyle and climate, a beautiful country, great quality of life, common language, friendly communities as well as the strong British connection and shared history.
Australia is a huge country, some thirty times the size of the UK but with only a third of the population. Brits are generally attracted to four main cities; Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth.
The property market has seen strong growth in recent years though this is starting to show some moderation in the light of slowing economic growth. Sydney and Melbourne still posted 10% growth in the year to the end of Q1 2016. More modest growth was posted in Brisbane. Perth, with its strong connection to the mining industry actually fell by nearly 5%. (Source Knight Frank Global Cities Residential Index.)
Despite the abundance of land, there is a property shortage and foreigners are restricted to purchasing new developments.
Australia’s urban population is expected to grow strongly over the next decade which suggests that demand will remain strong. Given the recent sharp increase in house prices, risks of a revaluation do exist.
Sydney is famous for its iconic Opera House, Harbour Bridge, coastal views and its beaches. It is a vibrant, fashionable and cosmopolitan city, the largest in Australia with a population just over four million.
Sydney is the premium end of Australia and prices are some 30% above the national average. For younger working expats, Bondi along with regenerated inner-city areas like Paddington, Newtown and Erskineville are popular.
North of the harbour in Kirribilli is popular for its views of Sydney Harbour. On the water, Watson Bay and Rushcutters Bay are fashionable areas.
The outer suburbs of Liverpool and Casula are still affordable though likely to increase as a result of a new airport planned for nearby Badgerys Creek. The western suburbs are generally better value.
More reasonable pricing is available out of the city towards the Central Coast and Wollongong. Hamlyn Terrace and Narara are getting a lot of interest.
Brisbane is popular, has great weather and job opportunities. Established Brisbane suburbs such as New Farm, Ascot, Paddington and Salisbury should offer good potential, whilst outer suburbs such as Redcliffe and Redland Bay have been popular locations for British buyers.
The coastal corridors towards the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast offer more affordable options and provided you remain beachside, should offer good potential.
Australia’s sporting and chic second city is also very fashionable with the docklands a trendy spot. Again, the western suburbs of Melbourne are more affordable such as South Kingsville, Caroline Springs and further out, Werribee. In the northern suburbs; Reservoir, Preston and Coburg are popular. The commuter towns of Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong offer more value.
Over on the west coast, Perth has large expat populations drawn by the mining industry, great quality of life and hot Mediterranean-type climate. It has also been popular by virtue of its geography as the first port of call in Australia.
Some 35% of the 2 million population has British roots with sizeable South African, Italian and South-East Asian communities as well. The most British areas are the northern suburbs such as Mullaloo whilst Joondanna and Ellenbrook are popular as well.
Due to the slump in commodity prices in recent years, the property market is fairly subdued at present.
Tasmania and Hobart in particular is an up and coming area that also boasts the cheapest housing in Australia. The climate, outdoor lifestyle, great land and sea produce along with a clean unpolluted environment are the big draws.