Sydney’s Most Affordable Properties Revealed

By Louis Christopher on 25 Feb 2015
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This week we’ve ranked Sydney’s most affordable properties and no surprise, outer-suburban properties dominate the list, with the Hawkesbury making a strong showing, but even inner-city units make an appearance.

All Top Ten properties are within commuting distance of Sydney and just to keep things balanced, we haven’t included any Blue Mountains properties because if we had, they would have accounted for all of the Top Ten.

Topping the list is a studio apartment in Rosehill, on the market for $195,000, reduced from $235,000 after 175 days on the market.

The Sydney property market might be the nation’s hottest, but there are pockets of coolness.

Next on the Top Ten list is a house on the lovely Hawkesbury River in Cogra Bay, which will only cost you $215,000, after being reduced from an initial asking price of $295,000 after almost 1800 days on the market. Three other houses in nearby Bar Point appear in the Top Ten and they aren’t bad either. Prices start from as little as $280,000 and the setting looks idyllic, if you don’t mind getting home by boat.

Indeed, this lovely area has been kept affordable because it sits in the middle of a national park and is most accessible by boat. If it is peace and tranquillity you want, and no neighbours, then you can get it right here in the Hawkesbury. 

In contrast, if you want to be in bustle of inner-city Sydney, then you still have options.  The Sydney property market might be the nation’s hottest, but there are pockets of coolness. You can buy a studio in Darlinghurst for $350,000, down from an initial asking price of $435,000 or a two-bedroom apartment in Chippendale for $620,000, reduced from $728,000. A two-bedroom unit in Maroubra offering ocean views is selling for $750,000, heavily discounted from $890,000 after 112 days on the market.

Out west, you can buy a one-bedroom apartment in Merrylands for $390,000, down from $540,000, or a two-bedroom apartment in Westmead for $499,000, down from $570,000.

So for first time home buyers, there are affordable options. With an average loan size of $332,200 in December 2014, you’d be able to renovate, as well as buy, with some of these properties. First home buyers are borrowing almost as much as regular home buyers, who had an average loan size of $342,100 in December. In NSW, the average loan size was slightly larger at $392,200.  

So just how many first home buyers are there in the market?

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) said last week it has changed its method of estimating loans to first home buyers by adjusting for under-reporting by some lenders that only report buyers receiving the first home owner grant. Some lenders have failed to include first home buyers in their loan figures if the buyer was ineligible for the grant.

But even with the adjusted numbers, first home buyers are not pushing the Sydney market higher. The revised ABS data reveals they accounted for just 14.5% of total owner occupied housing finance commitments in December 2014, down slightly from 14.6% in November 2014. It’s largely investors who are doing the heavy bidding, and with interest rates falling, that trend will likely continue through 2015.

About the Author

SQM Research is an independent property advisory and forecasting research house which specialises in providing accurate property related advice, research and data to financial institutions, property developers and real estate investors. It is founded and run by one of the country's most recognised and respected property analysts, Louis Christopher.

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