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Should You Buy City or Country Real Estate?

June , 13 2019
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The opportunities for wealth creation through property investment are better than ever with smart buyers considering growth areas in city or country real estate regions for investment.

In 2019 more than ever, buyers and investors in the property market have expanded their search for smart long term investments to both city and country areas. Despite a downturn in the property market, the best wealth-creation opportunities continue to be in real estate. Over the past 18 months, the overall Australian housing market has recorded a cumulative 1.9% fall in value but there are growth cycles in many regional areas. This means that the key to property success is strategic thinking, research and due diligence. Considering locations outside of metropolitan centres like Sydney and Melbourne, such as regional cities or country areas can be the key to property success in a slower real estate market.

Almost two-thirds of Australians live in capital cities and these areas continue to be the better investment opportunities for long term capital gain. However, affordability, fewer lending opportunities and falling rents make these areas challenging for buyers.

With a focus on infrastructure projects and lifestyle in regional areas, there is more opportunity than ever before in country areas for above-average capital growth and rental returns. There are many growth areas around employment hubs, infrastructure projects and lifestyle amenities. Regional areas are more connected than ever with the internet, people do not have to reply on employment in traditional industries like agriculture and mining, but can work remotely online while enjoying the country lifestyle.

Where is the strongest growth? City or country real estate?

Regional centres like the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Geelong and Wollongong are growing strongly due to migration and major infrastructure projects in the regions. Properties in these areas are more affordable than comparative properties in metropolitan areas.

It is important to do your homework when considering property in country areas. Properties are more affordable with regional housing prices are around 55% of capital city equivalents, however more regional properties sell at a loss than those in capital cities.

Identifying growth areas with employment diversification, councils supportive of infrastructure projects and growth trends is fundamental. There are great opportunities in country areas to identify affordable properties that attract higher rental yield and positive return on cash flow if appropriate due diligence is undertaken.

“If you look at population trends over the last 25 years, there has been a move away from regional areas to capital cities. Cities generally have more diversified economies. Economies in regional areas can be reliant on just a handful of industries,” says Cameron Kusher, head of research for Australia at CoreLogic RP Data.

If you are looking at property in city areas, do research in undervalued suburbs close to the city which are undergoing gentrification to identify properties with strong potential for capital gain. The annual average growth rate of capital city housing markets is around 2% more than country areas on average, which means that investors seeking long term growth should generally invest only in larger capital cities.

Consider your goals

Regardless of whether or not you are considering property investment in the city or country real estate areas, the fundamental drivers in the area such as affordability, infrastructure, employment hubs and lifestyle amenities must be considered. There are thriving economies with affordable properties in both regional and city locations. Consider your property investment goals and do your homework in the region to identify properties with potential to meet your needs-whether they are capital gains, rental returns, equity building or finding the perfect family home.

No matter where you investing in Australia, you can use Minus The Agent to buy, sell or rent your property. With our online platform, you can buy, sell or rent your property anywhere or anytime with confidence that you have online support from expert real estate agents and that you are saving money from agent commission fees.

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