Sometimes you must look beyond the bright city lights for opportunity, and this holds true for property investment. This is why savvy investors are looking to regional areas within australia, where a few of the fastest growing areas for property investment are. CoreLogic’s Cameron Kusher observes that all their data points to growth for regional markets, particularly those within striking distance of capital cities, with affordability the main driver.

That is not to say regional markets are not without risk. You simply have to look at a number of WA’s mining towns, where boom was relatively short lived, and the crash has hurt many who bought if the market was booming.

So, where to invest in 2018? And where are the most effective places to shell out and top growth suburbs in regional Australia? Let’s check out some to watch in 2018 and beyond.

NSW fastest growing regional property – should you be looking to find the best regional investment areas and opportunities away from Sydney’s crazy market, there are many regional centres which posted excellent development in 2017. Corelogic reported that this Illawarra region is Australia’s top regional performer for that September 2017 quarter, with houses and apartments up by 13 % and 17 per cent respectively.

Based on development of the median property price (year on year performance to September 2017), Wollongong had a stellar year posting 13.9 % growth, with a median house value of $740,000. The local economy is self-sufficient, with education and tourism as the primary drivers, with 1,100 people moving into the region every week, the Gong is on the rise. And being just 90 km from Sydney, it is commutable by car and train.

Other regional property hotspots just south of Wollongong – include Shoalhaven ( 19.5 per cent growth/median price: $545,000) and Shellharbour (16.7 percent growth/median price: $650,000). Areas of the South Coast have likewise performed strongly over 2016/2017, with Falls Creek, near Jervis Bay ( 55.4 percent); and Denhams Beach ( 48.78 percent) near Batemans Bay both standout performers.

Investors can also be looking north for the once unfashionable Newcastle, which was transformed into among fastest growing regional towns in the state. BIS Shrapnel’s Australian Housing Outlook reports the 7 year price trend for houses here is a solid 6.9 % per year, while units have outperformed them posting annual returns of 7.7 percent.

The best suburbs in Newcastle, and people likely to experience growth in the near future include Wickham, Lambton and Lake Macquarie, which is actually a short 30 minute drive through the CBD.

Investors would like to once unfashionable Newcastle, that has been turned into certainly one of fastest growing regional towns in NSW

Victoria regional property hotspots – Melbourne is definitely the undoubted centre of best capital growth suburbs to invest in property, and though it may be still more affordable than Sydney, investors are increasingly trying to regional areas in Victoria for better value and much more attractive growth opportunities.

A lot of Victoria’s regional hubs and towns are actually more offered to Melbourne, due to better transport links, plus they give you a more relaxed lifestyle. Here the most effective investment suburbs for 2018 include Lorne, where median house price grew by 35.26 % over 2017, the higher Geelong ( 13.1%) area – just 75 km from Melbourne and Wodonga ( 6.7%). A lot of Victoria’s regional hubs and towns are now more accessible to Melbourne, due to better transport links and offer a more relaxed lifestyle

Queensland regional property hotspots – Queensland’s regional markets took a severe battering once the mining boom arrived at a conclusion, but there are warning signs of recovery. Employment is rising and vacancy rates are tightening in lots of, including in Townsville. The same pertains to Cairns in which a strengthening tourism sector is being maintained by local migration. Other growth hotspots are Sunshine Coast suburbs, including Buddina (100 km from Brisbane), Forest Glen, and Noosa Heads – which all grew by 13 percent or maybe more around to October 2017.

South Australia regional property hotspots – The Domain House Price Report reveals that Adelaide’s current median house price is $519,517, which can be affordable by capital city standards. But should you be looking for something more affordable, say with a median house price under $300k, then South Australia’s coastal towns are worth investigating. Included in this are Tumby Bay ($227,500), 50 km from Port Lincoln, Stansbury ($243,000) and Kingston ($246,000).

Otherwise Mount Barker, 35 km east of Adelaide, currently offers great value for money and proximity to the city as well as usage of any number of outstanding local wineries. Blanchetown, 109 km from Adelaide, which CoreLogic reports grew 42.6 percent over 2016/2017 is yet another regional place to watch, growth that puts it within the top 10 fastest eawclq suburbs. If you are searching for the affordable investment under $300k, then South Australia’s coastal towns are worth investigating

Western Australia regional property hotspots – Like Perth, regional Western Australia has seen hard times considering that the mining boom disappeared over the horizon, where dwelling values have fallen faster than the state capital. The flipside with this is the fact WA is now one of the most affordable property markets in the country – which never lasts lengthy. If you are looking for somewhere near Perth then Scarborough – just 14 km from the CBD – offers beachside living with no price of several other high profile suburbs. Property prices here grew 2.82 % during to June 2017, where most city suburbs are still negative.

Further afield Fremantle (23 km from Perth) has had significant spending on its infrastructure, including the train station, Victoria Quay and waterfront. Other regional towns with recent upgrades to local infrastructure include Katanning (300 km from Perth), which is now attached to the NBN, with further funds earmarked for local hospitals and schools.

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