ARTICLE SOURCE: DOMAIN.COM.AU
Written By KIRSTEN ROBB, CHRISTINA ZHOU
Melbourne has 17 new suburbs with a million-dollar median house price, according to data from the Valuer-General.
While many of Melbourne’s usual suspects have a seven-figure median house price, such as Toorak and Kew, postcodes such as Lysterfield South, Box Hill and Bentleigh also edged over the million-dollar mark last year.
This week’s data shows the value of all property sales in Victoria had jumped by 12 per cent last year.
Caulfield East’s median house price jumped by 36 per cent to $1.15 million. This equates to a $300,000 increase in the year to 2014.
“I think certainly in Caulfield East they may be surprised about that,” Glen Eira deputy mayor Mary Delahunty said.
“It has always traditionally been a suburb full of housing for families … a lot of California bungalows and a good mix of entry-level houses,” she said.
But Cr Delahunty said rising prices in the municipality increasingly push families, especially young first home buyers, into smaller subdivided blocks and apartments.
“So while they might be surprised today, I think that they can definitely expect to see more of it.”
Burnley, Box Hill and Ashburton also had significant gains in the year, with median prices in those suburbs soaring by more than 20 per cent in 12 months.
Meanwhile, Port Melbourne dropped off the million dollar list in 2014, with its house median dipping from $1 million to $982,000 last year.
Domain Group senior economist Andrew Wilson said low interest rates had been a key driver, allowing buyers to borrow and pay more. With prices pushing up, buyers were turning to neighbouring suburbs.
“The strength is radiating out from what have been the strong parts of the Melbourne market over the last few years, particularly those aspirational suburbs in the inner south, the inner north and the inner east,” Dr Wilson said.
“[There] is a perception in those middle and higher-priced suburbs that it’s in a good time to buy.
“Prices had been flat for a couple of years and that’s created its own momentum, and in return that’s radiated out like a ripple in a pond into those suburbs nearby.”
He said more million-dollar suburbs were almost inevitable, given those very low interest rates, as buyers were pushed out from the aspirational areas of the inner and outer east, the south-east and the inner and middle north.
Mary-Anne Richards and her family bought their four-bedroom California bungalow inFawkner Street, Aberfeldie, for $220,000 in 1995.
With plans to downsize to another property nearby, they are hoping to sell their home for $1.53 million through private sale.
Compared with neighbouring suburbs Essendon and Moonee Ponds, Mrs Richards said Aberfeldie had a higher concentration of quality homes.
“The suburb itself hasn’t really grown exponentially, there’s still about the same amount of houses,” the migration agent said.
“There’s not a lot of increase in population, probably more school traffic because the schools are very popular.
“It’s still small enough to have a sense of community and belonging.”
Nelson Alexander agent David Vaughan said families were drawn to Aberfeldie because of the ample choice of public and private schools in the area.
He said the picturesque streetscapes dotted with period homes, from California bungalows to Federation and Edwardian houses, were also a drawcard.
“What does drive a lot of families to that particular pocket is the Maribyrnong River; the walking tracks, the parklands in Aberfeldie, athletics tracks. It’s a real lifestyle down there.”