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Top 3 Tips on How to choose an up-and-coming suburb

By Dominique Merriman

Real estate and investment property success stories?

It’s all about research.

Buying a property – whether you plan to live in it yourself or use it as the foundation for your property investment portfolio to build future wealth – is a big decision and one you should enter into with your eyes wide open.

These days savvy property buyers can let their fingers do a lot of the walking to explore what suburb could be that next hot property.

In the north shore Sydney market at the moment, that research will no doubt lead you to some important suburbs to watch, with data from CoreLogic showing that Lindfield has the highest growth in 2016, with an impressive 19% annual growth in median unit prices and growth expected to continue.

To make sure you’re up to speed with the latest real estate information, there are some simple steps to take.

Examine sales data

Property sales reports hold valuable background information – and often interesting projections, too.  Depending on the company you source the information from, they might be free, or available for purchase. That old saying about you get what you pay for? Free stuff can take you so far but for more in-depth analysis, it’s worth considering subscription to a reputable sales data site that can deliver the hard facts about recent sales to help you make a clear investment decision.

Property reports give you access to suburb price growth using either monthly, yearly, or even 10-year comparisons.

By reading this data carefully, you’ll have a better understanding of property market peaks and troughs particular to the suburbs you have your eye on – and you’ll uncover dormant suburbs that are on the brink of an exciting real estate price explosion. The top tip here – if the numbers look good – get in quick. Prices will likely only go up.

Getting up close and personal with local, professional real estate agents is another great way to access information and check feedback against the facts and figures from your online research. Most good agencies will provide some local market information and updates. Check out our latest market report video on our areas here.

Another useful source is the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). A quick visit to their site – – can unearth helpful statistics on a variety of analytical articles that include detailed summaries on suburbs, including the demographics of people living there and how things are evolving.

Not Best = Better

Remember – the most sought-after suburbs have already gone through both crash and boom. The likelihood is that a similar cycle may not happen again for another decade or so. Choose a less popular suburbs that is yet to hit its straps of peak popularity and there’s a fair chance your investment will return a healthy benefit. It’s important to realise that real estate is a long-term investment. Holding property for around 5-7 years gives the best results and if you can hold it even longer – you’re sure to be a real winner.

To get you on the right track, look up at last year’s predictions for hot suburbs to watch and then look a little further to the suburbs that border them or are just a few minutes away. Last year’s not-so-hot will soon be next year’s golden opportunity.

Open your Mind to New Possibilities

Sure you’ve got a sound knowledge of your favourite suburbs – now extend your scope. Taking that extra distance on the train line, or driving that additional ten minutes further than you planned could unearth a hidden gem. Yes, it means you’re a little further out, but only just, and as the populations continues to spread and grow, that outlying suburb will not be as far away as you think five years from now.

Researching with local council to find out information about planned infrastructure is solid knowledge to have up your sleeve. It’s a sure sign that the area is on the up – and that means positive investment potential to build a quality property portfolio.

Properties that are handy to train stations, schools, shopping centres and practical amenities (think hospitals, parks, recreational grounds, etc.) will always perform better than ones that have less convenient lifestyle on offer. The stronger the appeal to the average potential buyer or renter, the better your property will perform in the long-term.

With an interesting smattering of north shore suburbs, including Turramurra and Lane Cove already ticking the right boxes to put them on the hot list of North Shore properties to watch in 2017* and beyond, it’s a perfect time to visit the area and imagine yourself enjoying a great lifestyle at a price you can afford. And keep your eye on Hornsby and St Ives, too…

Making a decision now could be the difference you need to get a secure foot in the property door and create a life you’ll love.


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