Buying well in Brisbane when it comes to property takes insider knowledge, just as in any major capital city. But, with Brisbane’s unique subtropical weather, amazing lifestyle and special relationship with the outdoors, Brisbane’s housing market is highly sought after. With our handy tips on what you need to know when moving to Brisbane, you’re sure to make the right decision! Read on to find out more.
Why buy in Brisbane?
Living in Brisbane is amazing – who wouldn’t want to live in a sun-dappled paradise, with beautiful leafy suburbs littered with gorgeous purple jacaranda trees and surrounded by the stunning beaches of the Gold and Sunshine Coasts? We have all the amenities of the big southern capital cities without the overcrowding, our winters (all two weeks of it) are practically non-existent, and the sun-worshipping lifestyle is second to none. The rest of the country has finally caught on to what all south-east Queenslanders know instinctively from birth – Brisbane is brilliant.
Property in Brisbane is just as unique and enticing as the city itself. With an average house price that wouldn’t warrant a wardrobe in inner Melbourne, potential buyers get more than their money’s worth. For those with young children, Brisbane still resides in that nostalgic era where backyards were a thing.
What you need to know
When trying to enter into the Brisbane property market, it’s important to understand the ins and outs of what makes a property worth buying in the city. There are a number of differences between Brisbane and other capital cities that are essential knowledge – and we’re about to delve into them.
Adapt, adapt, adapt
Melbournians or Sydney-siders have a totally different lifestyle to that of Brisbane. Brisbane-ites embrace the great outdoors, adopt a relaxed attitude to pretty much everything, and have our own property styles. It’s important that out-of-towners don’t impose their own rules on the Brisbane market, as that could lead to bad decision-making. What’s important to know about Brisbane properties is that outdoor entertaining spaces and their flow-on from the indoor spaces are great selling points. Also, unlike southern states, carports rather than lockable garages are more than acceptable. And, probably most importantly, air conditioning is an absolute must if you want to survive the muggy months of a Brisbane summer.
Embrace the differences
Geography and weather really do make a huge difference in the styles of homes available in a city, with character properties differing between Brisbane and other states. Just as terraced houses are highly sought after in Sydney, so are beautiful old wooden Queenslander-style houses on stilts and with tin roofs highly sought after in Brisbane. Our humidity, frequent thunder storms, and close proximity to the oceans meant that in times past, wooden houses with verandahs set on stilts were designed to catch the sea breezes and keep the interior of the house cool. The style might look like a termite buffet or just a nightmare in upkeep in general to an interstate investor, but they’re still incredibly popular. Suburbs like New Farm where these houses reign supreme are extremely trendy and the market continues to grow. Brick and tile set low on concrete slabs are not as well regarded by local buyers due to their tendency to turn into sweat boxes in the heat of the day. They also lack the old-fashioned charm and personality of the Queenslander.
Geography is key
Knowing the geography of Brisbane and how weather events can affect properties is incredibly important in a city like Brisbane. In summer months (anywhere from October to April), Brisbane is subject to severe thunderstorms, sometimes over consecutive nights. These storms can bring in huge amounts of rain very quickly, as well as golf-ball sized hail and a lot of noise and flashing. Over the past decade, we’ve had two massive flooding events that have resulted in the loss of dozens, if not hundreds of properties. For this reason, low-lying suburbs aren’t as popular in Brisbane as they are in other states. You may have to forgo the ability to partake in the pleasure of an easy evening stroll that a low-lying suburb might provide. By low-lying, we mean suburbs that might be on the riverside or connected to the creek system in particular, but also some bayside suburbs. Suburbs that were most affected included Rosalie and Inala. For more detailed information, check out the Brisbane City Council’s Floodwise Property Report.
Also, an elevated vantage point offers improved air flow and natural sunlight. In Brisbane, a north-facing home catches the warmth from the morning sun and avoids the harsh glare of the setting sun. Brisbane’s humidity also means that the heat of the day sets in far more quickly than in other capital cities – sometimes it’s 30 degrees at 7 am! Sometimes, even the side of the river matters when it comes to choosing a home. If you decide on a home on the south side of the city, the northern view of the city skyline actually adds a little more value to your home than a southern view from the northern side of the city. It’s an odd but interesting fact.
Another thing to consider is our subtropical climate providing the ultimate environment for mosquitoes, midges, and a host of other fun insect life. It’s all part and parcel of living in Brisbane’s beautiful subtropical climate. The suburbs most affected by insect life include those that lie within wetland areas, including those close to the airport, the Tichi Tamba wetlands near Bracken Ridge, Boondall, Murarrie, and Tingalpa Creek.
Which Catchment is best?
The Queensland State Government has recently released a report about the best school catchment areas in Brisbane, which is incredibly useful for families looking to purchase a property in Brisbane. If you aren’t familiar with the area, the state government has also created a map that shows the school catchments and what suburbs lie within those areas. As the report dictates, the best high school catchment is the Brisbane State High School, and the best primary school catchments include Macgregor, Indooroopilly and Rainworth.
What suburbs should you be on the lookout for?
Based on each of these factors, we’ve come up with a list of the best suburbs in each part of our wonderful city.
Red Hill, New Farm, Everton Park, Bald Hills and Sandgate.
Mount Gravatt, Coopers Plains, Corinda and Darra.
Carindale, Wynnum, Manly, Coorparoo and Carina.
Toowong, Indooroopilly, Bardon, Kenmore and Taringa.