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markp

Brisbane property market

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Hi Everyone,

 

My family and I are on the verge of deciding to move from the UK to Brisbane. We're hoping to live in one of the family friendly suburbs not too far from the city. Can anyone give any advice on the property market? Is it changing much? Are prices going up? Staying flat? Also, is there a good time during the year to buy? We're trying to work out when to move and I'd like to try to buy at the best time.

 

Thanks is in advance for any advice.

 

Mark

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The market doesn't seem too bonkers but it's still quite expensive to live close commuting distance to the city. Loads of different opinions on family friendly suburbs. I'm in Sherwood, best place I've lived in Brisbane but you need $$ to buy here. Decide if you want to live near the sea or close to city - you can't have both. Really nice areas (Mitchelton, Redlands) if you're happy to commute. Maybe you could pick up a property with a pool easier in June/July - seems to work for renting. What does surprise me is the speed of most sales here.

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We are moving 6 weeks after putting in an offer on a house. It's very quick.

You also really need a 20% deposit to avoid extra indemnity fees.

 

I assume that you will be renting to start with?? I would not recommend buying until you are here and a bit settled. Then you'll have a better idea on jobs/schools/weather. We are in the Redlands and I love it.

 

Good luck


Don't have regrets because you were too scared to try something.

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Thanks Tina. My wife is actually from the GC so we know the area pretty well, although we're coming on holiday next week and will check out the suburbs to get a better feel. Good to hear you're enjoying where you are. Trying to draw up a list of suburbs. Ideally, we'd like family-friendly with a couple of nice cafes, near the city - near enough to cycle in to work! Bulimba seems nice... Red Hill... Ashgrove, Wilston... Any suggestions / comments welcome!

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Thanks Tina. My wife is actually from the GC so we know the area pretty well, although we're coming on holiday next week and will check out the suburbs to get a better feel. Good to hear you're enjoying where you are. Trying to draw up a list of suburbs. Ideally, we'd like family-friendly with a couple of nice cafes, near the city - near enough to cycle in to work! Bulimba seems nice... Red Hill... Ashgrove, Wilston... Any suggestions / comments welcome!

 

All good suggestions. I live in Wooloowin. Wooloowin, Clayfield, Ascot, Hamilton all good options around this way

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Thanks a lot for these suggestions. We've heard they're all really nice places. Do you have to cross the Gateway bridge to get to the Gold Coast? And do you get a lot of noise from the airport? Cheers.

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Bulimba, Red Hill, Ashgrove, Wilston, Wooloowin, Clayfield, Ascot, Hamilton, Bardon, Toowong all fit the bill but the bill will be a large one. They're all expensive suburbs and you will be looking at an absolute minimum of 500k but probably a fair bit above that for anything decent.

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Thanks a lot for all these suggestions. I think we're ok with budget - just want to make sure we get the right mix of a nice house with space for kids, a nice community and close to the city. Ambitious wish list so I suspect we'll have to pay a premium. We also have to consider schools. Are there good state schools or is it a given that a lot of people go private? Thanks everyone for your help.

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The state schools in most of those suburbs I've mentioned will be good ones as they're all high socio-economic areas. In those areas, a fairly high percentage of children will attend private schools, particularly from year 7 (the beginning of high school). It's entirely up to you - they'll get a good education in either system in those suburbs.

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Thanks a lot for these suggestions. We've heard they're all really nice places. Do you have to cross the Gateway bridge to get to the Gold Coast? And do you get a lot of noise from the airport? Cheers.

 

Gateway bridge is pretty. convenient but I don't usually use it for the gold coast at the weekend from my place. I never notice much in the way of aircraft noise, when I've flown into Brisbane it is either from over the water near sandgate to land or going low over pinkenba. Do hear them going over occasionally but nothing that would bother you.

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Prices in Brisbane have been moving upwards, although not at the pace of Sydney or Melbourne. Interest rates are at historical lows, but unemployment is also rising.

 

The peak selling season is spring. However, it doesn't matter all that much. Currently, things will be picking up a bit as school restarts etc. The weeks leading into Christmas are always slow. Most people want to have their deals done by the end of November.

 

As for government schools, look at their catchment areas, which are on the state government website. The schools in the better areas are now pretty picky about their catchments.

 

The elite private schools all have long waiting lists. I would not assume you would be able to get into one of those. The Catholics run their own system, although it does get government funding. (There is a very well regarded Catholic complex near me - Proddies often want to get in, but can't. )

 

There are newer private schools, often run by evangelicals, which are cheaper. Some, from what I hear, are very dubious, at least from my perspective - want to teach Creationism, for example. Require that the parents tithe.

 

There is only one selective government high school - Brisbane State High in south Brisbane. To get into that, you have to live within the catchment, or your kid has to get in by means of a very competitive examination. It's now a very big school and getting bigger - going to have 3,000 kids soon. (I know because I'm an alumnus.)

 

For a house with at least three bedrooms and two bathrooms, in an area about 7ks from the CBD, you are looking at around $600,000 to $700.000 at least. More if you want a pool. (They are very expensive to run these days, by the way. Electricity is no longer cheap.)

 

I think you would do well to rent for at least six months before deciding to buy. Transaction costs, especially stamp duty, are very high here and you won't want to make mistakes.

 

The new school year starts tomorrow, by the way.

 

Robyn

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We are Aussies living in the UK and thinking about returning home to Brisbane in the next year or two. We kept our house at Coorparoo & are so glad we did as prices have increased. If your wife has family on the GC there are some nice southern suburbs you can consider from which you can ride to the City for work. Coorparoo, Norman Park, Bulimba are all nice with good facilities and schools. Good luck with your move!

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Yeah you really can't go wrong within 5-10k of the city in any direction

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Cheers! Love the idea of being able to bike or run to work - no more London tubes!

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Cheers! Love the idea of being able to bike or run to work - no more London tubes!

 

Hmmm. You'd better look for the bike tracks then. It's not an especially bike friendly city. A German tourist was killed on a bike in the middle of town last year. There are bike lanes, but they can suddenly peter out. There is a LOT of traffic on the roads here now. I cross one of the major arterial roads in the mornings, walking my dogs, at 5 a.m. and often have to scamper across.

 

A lot depends on where you live of course. But bike riders here always look horribly vulnerable to me, even though wearing a helmet is compulsory, and a lot of car drivers are aggressive towards them.

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Thanks Roberta. I know what you mean. We lived in Melbourne a few years ago and it really surprised me that people who are so friendly and kind when you meet them can be so different when they get behind the wheel! And not just towards cyclists!

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Cheers! Love the idea of being able to bike or run to work - no more London tubes!

You wont be running in the heat. And as others have said, cycling is for the die hard professionals only. I admire them, but too scared to get on my bike for work! Lots of traffic and the some of the most expensive parking in the world in Brisbane.

Be kind to yourself if you are working in the CBD and try to get a house in walking distance of a train station or excellent bus way system. Parking at the train stations and bus ways fills up after about 7 a.m. so being walking distance is the trick if you can manage it.

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Agree with Chortlepuss. There is generally NO busway parking - it's all Kiss and Ride. i.e. you kiss your driver goodbye and they leave! There are some busway stops where you can park in the side street of course, which is what I often do. And re the train stations, I am told that around here (inner North) the car parks are full long before 7 a.m. Brisbane is an early town. Not too safe at night either, especially for women - despite attempts to improve safety with better lighting etc. It's dark by 6 in the middle of winter.

 

On the northern side, the busway goes from the Cultural Centre through the CBD (underground) to Chermside. Chermside to the city in rush hour takes about 30 minutes, at least. The Busway has to go on the road in some places.

 

There are local buses. One option is to get a house/apartment close to a local bus stop, and jump off that bus when you get to a Busway stop. That option is OK only in rush hour though. If you have to work late, it wouldn't be a good option.

 

Re parking in the CBD, unless your job comes with a parking spot, forget it. I never think of taking my car anywhere near the CBD.

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Railway is very handy. I live within a minutes walk of Wooloowin station and it is great because the Valley is only 3 stops away and the City 4 and takes about 15 mins. Also it is served by about 5 different lines, there is one every few minutes in either direction so as handy as getting the tube in London.

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Definitely open to public transport, particularly, as you say, if it's a good route and accessible from where we live. I run a fair amount and can cope ok jogging in heat and humidity although there are clearly limits and I know I wouldn't be able to do it year round.

 

Arrived in Oz yesterday for a holiday and will go and explore Brisbane properly this weekend. Staying on the GC and did a 10K along the ocean this morning. Great way to start the day!

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You wont be running in the heat. And as others have said, cycling is for the die hard professionals only. I admire them, but too scared to get on my bike for work! Lots of traffic and the some of the most expensive parking in the world in Brisbane.

Be kind to yourself if you are working in the CBD and try to get a house in walking distance of a train station or excellent bus way system. Parking at the train stations and bus ways fills up after about 7 a.m. so being walking distance is the trick if you can manage it.

 

In the interest of balance, my experience is very very different to this. I used to live in Stafford (inner north) and would often cycle to work, which was pretty much bikeway all the way and was a lovely ride. On the occasions I didn't ride I would sometimes drive to Wooloowin station and then catch the train. I never had any issue getting a park and this was pre-baby so there was no way I was even awake at 7am!

 

I now ride to work just under 14km from The Gap. I am in no way a professional and far too lazy to be 'die-hard'. You just have to be smart about these things. I don't ride along Waterworks Road which is not suitable for cyclists but would be the direct route. This adds 4km to my journey but it means I get to ride through nice parks and quiet streets. I also make sure I sign up to the storm alert service, so that I'm warned by text message if an evening storm is forecast. In that case I'll catch the bus, or just wait for it to pass.

 

It's not going to be bikeway door-to-door but I'm sure you'll be able to find a suitable route. I agree on Australian/Brisbane drivers though. They can be downright dangerous. I never had any issues commuting by bike in Dublin, Plymouth or Southampton but in Brisbane I've been knocked off my bike once and been spat on once in 4 years. In both cases the driver was completely in the wrong but road rage took over.

 

Re running. Yes it's hot but it's only a barrier for running to work if you let it be. You will definitely need shower facilities at work though!!

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Thanks Rob. Good to hear you've made it work for you. Whatever happens, before we buy anywhere, we'll be checking the accessibility, bike routes etc. And agree about the running, as indicated in my post above. Feels great to run to work when possible - sets me up for the day!

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