Is Melbourne on course to get back to its pre-pandemic growth trajectory? A network’s state-wide residential head examines indications that things are looking up in the Victorian capital.
According to Ben Gearing, Colliers residential Victoria director and leader of the relationship management division, the city’s economic prospects rest heavily on the opening of international borders due to three key groups that increased global travel will lure back to the metropolitan city.
- International students
The state’s major universities have stressed that a rapid return of international students is needed to keep educational institutions functioning, while the real estate community has noted the toll their departure took on the rental market.
In response, the Victorian government has released an International Student Arrivals Plan that will start to see the tens of thousands of international students return in controlled groups each week from the end of 2021.
- Overseas investors
According to Mr Gearing, while activity from international investors isn’t expected to reach its full potential until tourism resumes, Colliers has already seen a rapid increase in international buyers.
“We are working with more than 1,000 partner agent groups throughout China who have buyers with incredibly strong interest in Melbourne’s new and off-the-plan apartment market,” Mr Gearing reported.
Colliers has also seen significant action in their exclusive showroom on the ground in Shanghai that showcases some of Melbourne’s up-and-coming residential projects.
With overseas investment soon to ramp up, Mr Gearing urges potential buyers to act fast.
“We are encouraging all buyers to start doing their research now, so they can get in before the surge of buyer activity that is set to occur.
- Permanent migrants
The COVID-19 pandemic border closures and restrictions saw Melbourne’s overseas migration fall by a net outflow of 71,600 during 2020-21. Prior to that, the city was on track to surpass Sydney as the country’s largest metropolitan city, largely off the back of migrants drawn to the Victorian capital’s livability and job opportunities.
With strong incentives to attract migrants back to Australian shores, there’s every indication Melbourne could be once again set for record growth.
Melbourne’s deputy lord mayor Nicholas Reece has called for an increase in the nation’s annual migration intake from 160,000 to 300,000, welcoming a “massive wave of new immigrants to help get the city back on track”.