Regional QLD and other locations outside the major metro areas are set to benefit as the Australian population changes post-COVID-19.
New research from Ripehouse Advisory found that areas in QLD that could see population rises include Mackay, the Scenic Rim and the Somerset region.
The report identifies areas that stand to see significant population changes in the coming 18-24 months, based on a lack of overseas migration as well as peoples changing lifestyles.
Ripehouse CEO Jacob Field said property buyers will now be more focused on finding areas that are located two to three hours of Brisbane. These areas that had not traditionally seen large overseas migration. In addition, they would now also benefit from sea and tree changers who wanted to start working from home more, while still having the ability to commute to work if required.
“We are seeing a golden circle emerge around our key metro cities,” Mr Field said.
Mr Field said Queensland would likely be more insulated from population changes compared to both Sydney and Melbourne, given they were less reliant on overseas migration.
“Our research demonstrates that Brisbane as a city, with its immediate surroundings including the Gold Coast, Ipswich and Sunshine Coast will be relatively well insulated from the population shift,” Mr Field said.
But he said that while these outer ring areas would see the benefits from more sea and tree changers, there would still be issues from the loss of overseas migration.
“To find the areas in prime position to undergo a population boom, we need to draw a ‘golden circle’ around Brisbane to places including Toowoomba, Mackay, Byron Bay, Somerset, and the Scenic Rim,” Mr Field said.
“These areas offer tremendous lifestyle benefits, space, community and reasonable accessibility to Brisbane for the intermittent commuter — the Brisbane CBD worker who can now get away with working at home 80 per cent of the time.”
According to the Ripehouse Advisory research, homes in Mackay have the potential to be one of the big winners from Australia’s population shift. After virtually all Australians were forced into a period of extended lockdown, with many businesses opting to work from home - both employers and employees realised that there wasn’t the need to be in the office each day. That has put the spotlight on many areas that are within close proximity of major cities and workplaces.
Mr Field said he had started to see many employers only requiring their staff to be in the office 20 to 40 per cent of the time.
The population shift is also looking like a positive for first home buyers, who can now look further from the CBDs and major cities. Additionally, first home buyers will be able to take advantage of new Government incentives such as HomeBuidler as well as the record low interest rate environment.
“A changing Australian population landscape is providing a once-in-a-generation investment opportunity,” he said
The report from Ripehouse Advisory identified 10 Australian suburbs tipped to lead population growth in the next 24-36 months which include North Mackay, Fernvale and Tamborine Mountain in QLD.
The study also identified the top 10 national suburbs likely to see falling population numbers over the next three years, which included Kingaroy.