Sydney is certainly not known for its housing affordability. Property prices have continued to rise and rise over the past decade but it seems like they are finally slowing down with property prices expected to drop for the first time in years. Though it is unlikely to see a big drop in prices, it is expected that first home buyer demand will be stronger thanks to lower competition and ongoing low rates. The harbour city will still remain the most expensive city to buy property in Australia and the prices of properties in and around the CBD continue to remain excessive. However, there are some great areas to buy property in Sydney if you’re looking to get into the market.
Around 35 km west of the CBD you will find one the largest and most multicultural suburbs in Sydney – Blacktown. Thanks to the growth of Parramatta, Blacktown’s appeal is fast increasing. It boasts great access to public transport with a well-serviced train station and a major bus interchange. The transit time into the CBD is around 45 minutes. For families, there is a large number of both private and public schools as well as plenty of parklands and public spaces around the suburb. In Western Sydney, it is considered to be one of the best areas for shopping, eating out and mobile reception. For food-lovers, there is an abundance of different cuisines and ethnic food stalls thanks to the diversity of the suburb. You can feel free to indulge in all the food you want because there are also a wide variety of gyms and health amenities located within the suburb. Around half of the population are families and the median age is 33. In terms of prices, the median unit price sits around roughly $500,000 and the median house price around $713,000.
Parramatta’s neighbour, Harris Park’s negative reputation is a thing of the past. It is now considered one of the most liveable suburbs in the West and is an more affordable option for those looking to buy property. In terms of public transport, it’s one of the more accessible suburbs in Sydney, with its own train station, as well as Parramatta train station nearby, and plenty of bus links. For culture, there is are theatres, libraries and cinemas close to and around the suburb. It is home to a significant amount of heritage-listed real estate as well as shops, cafes and restaurants. The median unit price is $495,00.
A leafy residential area, surrounded by Regional and National parks, Hornsby is a great area for families. It is 25km north of the CBD, about a 35-minute drive, but there is also a railway station providing frequent trains to not only the city but different areas of Sydney, particularly the North Shore and Northern Suburbs. The access to education is excellent with a number of primary and high schools, public and private, co-ed and single-sex, in Hornsby and neighbouring areas. Hornsby Girls High School is considered to be one of the best selective schools in Sydney, ranking 7th out of NSW schools in terms of HSC results last year. The suburb is home to Westfield Hornsby, that offers a wide range of major retailers as well as many dining options. The suburb is considered safe and relatively quiet, with the median house price standing around $1.1 million.
Right near Blacktown, you’ll find the small but flourishing suburb of Lalor Park. Like Blacktown, it has benefited from the growth of Parramatta. While it does not have the same public transport infrastructure as the neighbouring Blacktown it is close to the Seven Hills train station and there are a number of buses servicing the area. However, the best option for transport is usually by car as it is only a short 30-minute drive into the CBD. As the western suburbs go, it ranks well for liveability with good access to shopping centres, parks and schools (public, Catholic and primary). It is known for being quiet, friendly and leafy with a sense of community amongst neighbours. While the eating out and cultural options within the suburb are not extensive, it is only a short drive to other town centres. Currently, the median house price is $645,000.
Liverpool is one of the biggest centres of Sydney’s south-west and, like Parramatta, it is experiencing a period of growth and transition with the population expected to double in the Greater Liverpool Region by 2036. With the opening of the Badgerys Creek airport nearby, as well multiple development plans and the redevelopment of Liverpool Hospital, the economy is expected to grow further with jobs on the rise. This growth has meant more infrastructure and amenities in the suburb as well as more concerted efforts to improve transport in the region. There is a Westfield shopping centre with many dining and entertainment options, plenty of parks, a major train station and multiple schools nearby. The area is known for being multicultural and significantly more affordable than the rest of Sydney. The median price for a 2-bed unit is $440,000.
Surrounded by forest and bushland but with greatly improved train and road links to the CBD, Macquarie Park is fast becoming a suburb to look out for. A 20-minute drive into the CBD, it has great proximity to employment, being close to both a university, a business park and a major shopping centre. There is also a range of cafes and restaurants in the area, as well as good telecommunications coverage. It’s the perfect option if you want a quiet, leafy suburb combined with the positive aspects of city living. Unlike the western suburbs, in Macquarie Park you are less than 3km from the nearest beach which means you can enjoy some of the perks of coastal living when you want to! The median unit price is $778,000.
Move over Newtown, there is a new inner-west suburb that’s turning into a hotspot – Marrickville. Just 7km out of the CBD Marrickville is becoming an increasingly desirable location for property, particularly for millennials who are looking for the buzz and trendiness of Newtown without the huge price tag. Access to transport is excellent in this suburb, making it easy for residents to get to not only the CBD but other inner-city areas. There are plenty of public buses and multiple nearby train stations that service the area. Bustling and lively, Marrickville’s multiculturalism is best articulated through the many restaurants and cafes in the area, serving up every type of cuisine imaginable. There is no shortage of places to grab a coffee, have a wine or order takeaway from. There are a number of schools in the area however, statistics show that the area is mostly populated by young professionals. One thing to consider in regards to property in Marrickville is that it lies under the flight path so noise levels can be an issue for some residents. Currently, the median unit and house prices are around $770,000 and $1.4million respectively.
In the city’s south, around 35 minutes from the CBD, you’ll find another sought-after, family-friendly suburb in Menai. It is close bushland and parkland, with a lot of walking and hiking tracks close to the area, making it great for nature lovers and those wanting to escape that city living feel without moving too far away. As well as being relatively close to the city, it is only a 30-minute drive from the Royal National Park and 20 minutes from the beach. There is much more open space here than most suburbs in Sydney as well as plenty of community recreational facilities and a bustling shopping centre. There is good access to both primary and high schools as well as childcare facilities for those with young children. It is considered to be a safe, clean and vibrant southern suburb. A 3-bedroom house in this area will cost an average of $900,000.
Frequently being named as one of Sydney’s most livable areas, Parramatta continues to catch the eyes of Sydney’s property hunters. Technically Sydney’s geographical centre and straddling the Parramatta River, this area is fast emerging as a second CBD. Parramatta has experienced a staggering amount of growth over recent years and money and resources are still being put towards its development. It is only a 40 minute trip from Parramatta into the centre of Sydney and Parramatta railway station is a major transport interchange. However, it is also accessible by buses and the Rivercat. In fact, you can get a ferry right into the heart of the CBD and enjoy scenic views on the way. With plans to develop a light rail line and widen the M4, transport options will only improve. Once considered not much more than an urban industrial suburb, Parramatta has transformed into a vibrant, lively city with a growing economy, plenty of job opportunities, access to education and universities and great eating out, entertainment and shopping options. There is plenty of culture, with free concerts in Parramatta Park and plans to move the Powerhouse Museum to the banks of the Parramatta River. The median price for a house is $1.05million.
Just a 20-minute drive from the CBD and close access to the beach, Rockdale is one of the most liveable suburbs in Sydney’s south. There is a hospital and educational facilities close by and Bicentennial Park provides great walking trails, the chance to see wildlife and a great picnic spot. You’ll find large heritage homes, well-cared for gardens and many wide streets in this suburb as well as a mix of multicultural cafes, restaurants and shops. There is excellent access to local schools and the area is well-serviced by buses running into the city centre and other suburbs. If you’re looking for a culturally diverse suburb which offers proximity to the beach and city, with a range of amenities, then Rockdale could be the place for you. Median unit prices stand at $677,000.
An inner-city suburb, Waterloo is less than a 15-minute drive from the CBD and is served by multiple metro bus routes as well as being close to many train stations. If you’re feeling up to it, you can actually walk into the centre of the city in around 30-40 minutes as well! Historically a working-class suburb, Waterloo has transformed over the last decade and undergone significant gentrification. This has seen the development of more recreation areas, parks, a civic centre, apartment developments and a library. There is an abundance of trendy cafes and restaurants in walking distance, as well as in the neighbouring suburbs of Alexandria, Redfern and Eveleigh. There are lots of schools around Waterloo as well as being close to many of the major universities in Sydney. 80% of the population of Waterloo are singles, rather than families, and is the ideal suburb for young professionals who want to live in an interesting and lively suburb close to the city. Here, a 2-bedroom unit will set you back around $930,000.
While Sydney remains ridiculously expensive in terms of housing affordability, the excessive cost of living close to the CBD has led to the growth and development of some of Sydney’s outer suburbs that may have once been overlooked by potential home buyers. By considering how livable a suburb is, that is if it has good access to transport and education, shops and dining options as well as proximity to nature or the beach, rather than it’s distance from the CBD, you can find a range of suburbs that are great to live in. If any of those up-and-coming, vibrant areas sound like they would be the place for you then you can start your house-hunting journey off on the right foot by finding the perfect mortgage broker, who will help you to access a huge range of options and lenders when it comes to loans so that you can get the house of your dreams.