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The best suburbs for a slice of city property

By Orana Durney-Benson
22 January 2024 | 12 minute read
sydney melbourne reb gyn1m0

Prices in Sydney and Melbourne can scare off many buyers, but these six suburbs offer some of the best rental returns in the country to those brave enough to take a shot.

James Kirkland, executive general manager of sales at Little Real Estate, believes that 2024 holds a lot of opportunities for east coast investors looking to grab a property in Sydney or Melbourne.

“In 2024, we anticipate a surge in property prices fuelled by the relentless demand for housing outpacing the available supply,” said Mr Kirkland.

He explained that “an exceptionally strong rental market, coupled with a shortage of housing, continues to exert upward pressure on house prices nationwide”.

One of the major contributing factors behind this upward price trend is the shortage of homes on the market in 2023.

Mr Kirkland stated that this trend “propelled the capital city markets into growth sooner than anticipated” and led many tenants to become property owners as a result of “escalating weekly rents”.

Here are the 10 suburbs that Mr Kirkland has forecast will soar to new heights in 2024.

Kensington, NSW

  • Good for: Evergreen rental demand
  • Bad for: Affordability

Located in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, Kensington is the stomping ground of students from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA).

The suburb has recently began reaping the benefits of the new light rail that runs from the eastern suburbs to Circular Quay.

Mr Kirkland said: “Investment is strong here, with a 4.2 per cent rental yield for units, a median unit price of $940,000, and an impressive 24.9 per cent growth in rents over the past year,” which made Kensington the top performing Sydney suburb for rent growth in 2023.

Wiley Park, NSW

  • Good for: Entry-level investors
  • Bad for: Units

Wiley Park is a south-western Sydney suburb that Mr Kirkland pinpointed as “a compelling suburb to watch in 2024”.

With rental yields of 6.1 per cent – the third-highest in Greater Sydney – Wiley Park offers sound returns for investors at an accessible median price point of just $450,756.

Mr Kirkland also pointed to Wiley Park’s strategic location, “with public transport and bus stops particularly accessible for those seeking easy access to the city and the airport”.

Edmondson Park, NSW

  • Good for: Development potential
  • Bad for: Quick flips

Edmondson Park, in Sydney’s Liverpool area, is “emerging as a key player in the long-term growth market”, according to Mr Kirkland.

The suburb is set to benefit from a flurry of new transport infrastructure in years to come, including the much-awaited Western Sydney Airport and new Sydney Metro.

Over the last decade, the median home value has risen 100 per cent, and rental returns on houses and units average at 3.4 per cent and 4.6 per cent respectively – above-average for Sydney.

For those willing to sit and wait, Edmondson Park could see a significant surge in value in the coming decades.

Carlton, Victoria

  • Good for: High rental yields
  • Bad for: Family homes

Down in Melbourne, Carlton offers a rare opportunity for investors to make a mark in the inner-city market.

With the University of Melbourne students and healthcare professionals flocking to the area, Carlton is seeing impressive rental yields for 7.2 per cent for units.

Despite its amenities, culture and proximity to the central business district (CBD), Carlton’s median property price is just $353,373, making it among the most affordable suburbs in inner Melbourne.

Mr Kirkland stated that Carlton offers “a unique entry point for investors and first-time buyers in a typically high-cost area”.

Moonee Ponds, Victoria

  • Good for: Market diversity
  • Bad for: Annual growth

Located just 6 kilometres from Melbourne’s CBD, Moonee Ponds offers a unique blend of city and suburban living.

Mr Kirkland reported that Moonee Ponds is “currently experiencing a diverse real estate market, with property prices ranging from $1,500,000 for houses to $490,000 for units”.

The annual growth rate in Moonee Ponds has declined recently, but rent prices continue to rise and turnaround times are quick, with the average rental unit spending just 17 days on the market.

Point Cook, Victoria

  • Good for: Detached family homes
  • Bad for: High rental yields

Out in Melbourne’s south-west suburbs, Point Cook is a good option for investors looking to appeal to the family market.

Over the past year, rental prices for houses in Point Cook have risen by 16.3 per cent, bringing the current median rent to $500 per week.

Despite the substantial rise in rents, rental yields remain good but not groundbreaking – house owners can expect yields of 3.5 per cent, while unit owners can expect 4.4 per cent rental yields.

The best suburbs for a slice of city property
sydney melbourne reb gyn1m0
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