Living and working in Newcastle is not a secret anymore. With our sunny beaches and close commutes to a larger city, Newcastle and its municipal area, Lake Macquarie, are attractive locations for settling down, but they are also areas that the savvy investor should be paying close attention to.
In August 2021 the Australian Bureau of Statistics released a quarterly report that revealed a record number of people are leaving Australia's capital cities. It may be time to investigate the best areas to invest in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie to tap into the newly booming rental market.
The Sydney market prices were alone a good reason for buyers and investors to explore other options, but Newcastle is more than just a consolation prize. While a daily commute to work in Sydney would be a pain, more and more people are working remotely, barely needing to physically attend their office and besides, Newcastle is big enough to have everything you need, but not too large that it loses the community feeling.
Newcastle has a laid back, relaxed vibe to its people. We’re used to the sun, sand and surf being on our doorstep. There are not many other places in Australia where you can step out the door of your office and head out for a dip, have a burger while you watch the waves, all before heading home. There’s also remarkably less traffic than in bigger cities, and it’s possible to find a car space to park in the city centre. You won’t be cut short of conveniences either: Newcastle has a vibrant nightlife and all the home food delivery services you’ve come to depend on.
Not much further south than Newcastle is the municipal district of Lake Macquarie. As the name suggests, it is almost entirely based around a giant lake – in fact, Australia's largest coastal saltwater lake. This region is a tree-filled-with-a-lake-view-picturesque place to live and raise a family. With a more retiree and family-based demographic, there are some enviable places in Lake Macquarie with easy close access to the lake as well as ocean views. With plenty of parks and reserves, small public schools, just 90 minutes north of Sydney, Lake Macquarie has become a thriving economy.
For all these reasons, regional markets like Newcastle and Lake Macquarie are starting to grab investors’ attention. In recent years, the Newcastle property market did not experience the downturn that characterised the Sydney market. Street Property is a Newcastle real estate agent. We know that our real estate market is closely influenced by local economic conditions and is less connected to Sydney’s. It is also much more affordable: The median sale price over the last 12 months was $470K – a massive attraction to first home buyers or investors. When it comes to specific suburbs to invest in, the team at Street Property have outlined a selection to investigate further.
Inner city suburbs can be a smart investment. Wickham median property prices over the last year range from $672,500 for houses to $600,000 for units. If you are looking for an investment property, houses in Wickham rent out for $530 PW with an annual rental yield of 4.1%, units for $510 PW with a rental yield of 4.4%.
Houses in Lambton are more expensive with a median of $815,000 for houses, but over the last 5 years has seen a compound growth rate of 7.4%.
An attractive area to families looking for a convenient location that is close to the Hunter Valley expressway, M1 to Sydney and still only 20 minutes to the beaches. Fletcher has seen a compound growth rate of 4.5% for houses.
At the mouth of the lake, where it meets the ocean, Swansea is a jewel where a relaxed lifestyle meets the convenience of being ideally located close to the city. While median property prices over the last year range are from $680K, they have also had a whopping 7.2% growth rate.
Within half and hours’ drive from Newcastle’s CBD, Maryland was originally an agricultural area and is a relatively new suburb. It is primarily a family residential area. Median houses were $592,500 last year, and property prices are still rising. Investment properties see an annual rental yield of 4.2%.
With some of the most stunning views over Lake Macquarie, this suburb is close to shops, cafes and parks, and less than 30 minutes from Newcastle city. Although the big exclusive waterfronts may be out of your reach, there are some reasonably affordable homes to be found. Median house prices were $795,000, and Warners Bay has seen a huge growth rate of 7.1% for houses and 7.7% for units.
Positioned next to Newcastle most expensive suburb Merewether, the price tag of a cool $1.1 million puts Merewether Heights out of reach for most, but being five minutes from the beach, walkable distance to Darby Street’s cafes and shops, 10 minutes from the CBD and a short drive to large shopping centres has placed this exclusive suburb well for a healthy 7.7% growth.
Honourable mentions should be made for further suburbs, as they are attracting an unusually high rent or yield due to where they are located, which is next to new developing suburban areas, or are popular holiday destinations that command high levels of rent at certain times of the year. At Street Property, we recommend you try looking at the following areas:
Street Property’s philosophy is about providing genuine quality service, with the client’s best interest of paramount importance, so you know we’ll do the best by you. We service Newcastle, The Hunter, Lake Macquarie and surrounding areas, so if you’re ready to invest in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie, there’s no better time to contact us.
Please note that the information provided in this publication is of a general nature and should not be construed as specific advice or relied upon in lieu of appropriate professional advice.