The Australian dream of home ownership is changing with the times. As economic and financial pressures continue to mount for the average Australian the appeal of more affordable apartment style living is outshining the allure of house ownership for many first homebuyers entering the property market.
Recently released Australian building activity figures, research from The Commonwealth Bank and a separate study from The Housing Industry Association (HIA) all indicate first homebuyers are turning away from buying houses and towards purchasing units.
The growing pull of apartments for first-home buyers is to be expected for a number of reasons.
1) Expensive Houses & Stagnant Wages
Australian housing is amongst the most expensive in the world. Sydney’s median house price cracks $1 million, yet Australian wages have barely increased over the last decade in real terms after inflation.
This enormous gulf between house prices and wages is simply unsustainable, hence the tide turning in favour of apartment living.
2) The Future is Here
Amongst other influencing factors are:
Higher population growth
Higher land prices
And much more…
3) Lifestyle & Work/Life Balance Considerations
Proximity to work, improved security & safety, public transport and free recreational facilities for residents are all part of the attraction of modern apartments which are a far-cry from the bland boxes of yesteryear.
"There's a different sense of community within an apartment building. Developers now provide things like gyms and swimming pools, there's a lot of internal recreational facilities, I think also a preference, particularly among female buyers, for more security. There is a lifestyle factor pushing the search for apartment living beyond the normal drivers of affordability, amenity and proximity," explained senior economist for Domain, Andrew Wilson.
However, if Australia’s housing bubble were to burst, a swing back-towards houses would be probable for first homebuyers.