The conversations I’ve been having with young parents lately are suggesting an emerging trend when it comes to buying in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.
Increasingly, parents with young children are opting for apartment living over freestanding or semi-detached houses. What’s surprising about this trend is that their reasons aren’t always about cost. For many of these families, it’s a question of flexibility, quality and, above all, putting valuable time back in their week.
Young families are keeping their options open
Many of the house hunters I talk to have their eye on an apartment because they see it as a more flexible option in the long term. The much lower price tag means they’re able to break into a market more easily, giving them the ability to test what it’s really like to live in a desirable area like Randwick, Coogee or Clovelly. The plan is often to sell up after a few years and upgrade to a larger home (especially as the kids get older).
That said, I also meet plenty of young buyers who see an apartment as a much longer-term purchase. That’s because what they save when buying a smaller property they plan to spend on an investment elsewhere – usually a place they can rent out to offset mortgage payments in future.
Developers are catching up
Developers in Sydney’s eastern suburbs know apartments are in demand. But they’re also quickly realising that they can’t win over buyers if they choose to cut corners in terms of quality, spaciousness or position. In my own work, I’m seeing real enthusiasm for apartments that offer:
- High-quality fittings and fixtures throughout
- A floor plan with a mix of open and private living spaces
- Added security features like passcode locks on building exteriors
And of course, whenever the beach is nearby, it’s all about maximising that view.
The time saving factor
One of the biggest reasons younger house hunters are becoming so focused on apartments is the fact that they can get so much time back in their day. This is particularly important when factoring in things like the school run, regular trips to the local shops, and the amount of time parents will have to spend on public transport before they can get home to the kids.
Likewise, the amount of time apartment owners have to spend on maintenance is vastly reduced or completely taken care of by the owners of the strata complex.
Could an apartment be the answer?
For all these reasons apartments are often far better choices for young families – especially those buying their first home – who want to be part of an eastern suburbs community. If this sounds like you and you’ve been focused solely on getting into a house, it may be time to open up your options and include an apartment or townhouse on your house hunting list.