By Malcolm Aikman | 10 Oct 2016

As our population ages, the demand for retirement and aged care facilities is rising at an unprecedented pace.

As a result, health and aged care policies are in flux, bringing both challenges and opportunities.

At Urbis, we want to help you navigate such opportunities.

To that end, we have developed a new retirement and aged care market database, tailored to South East Queensland. This database collates all the essential information about what’s happening in the market and where the hotspots for growth are, capturing existing accommodation along with future applications and approvals. 

The database builds upon the Urbis Apartment Essentials series, regularly collating and analysing the need-to-know information for developers and investors in the residential market.

Download our insights on the Urbis Retirement Living and Aged Care database here for a summary of the key findings.

The movement to ‘vertical’ retirement living, a relatively new concept within SEQ, is beginning to take shape, with a number of recent additions to the market.

The top ten suburbs for future retirement unit supply are spread geographically across South East Queensland, however the Brisbane LGA holds over 20 per cent of future units in development application and over 29 per cent of future units in development approval status.

The Ipswich LGA currently holds only 6.2 per cent of total retirement units in approval status, a low number considering that at current stock levels there are 14.2 Ipswich residents (aged 70 to 84) per existing retirement unit. However, the Ipswich LGA holds over 30 per cent of retirement units in development application status across South East Queensland, the bulk of these located in Aveo Springfield at Springfield Central.

The movement to ‘vertical’ retirement living, a relatively new concept within SEQ, is beginning to take shape, with a number of recent additions to the market. An increase in development activity of this nature is already being felt, feeding off the desires and location demand of tenants who want to maintain their current lifestyle and networks.


Current future supply* within SEQ indicates that 41 per cent of supply exists within low-rise developments (0 to 3 storeys), 34% within mid-rise developments (4 to 8 storeys), and 25% within high-rise developments (9+ storeys).

In most cases, local government areas that are experiencing land constraints register a higher proportion of future supply that is mid-rise or high-rise in nature, with these developments in precincts driven by existing or future activity centres.

*Development applications and approvals


The future of aged care is not just about heath and housing, it is about creating a sense of well-being and care for not only the residents but also their families and carers. Through careful planning and design, we can create open and welcoming places with a village atmosphere,
where residents of all ages, background and ability are supported to remain engaged and active within their local community.

Stephanie Wyeth View Profile

Of the 4,283 aged care beds in development approval in SEQ, only 6.7 per cent are located within the Gold Coast LGA, despite 18.6 per cent of SEQ residents (85 years plus) residing in the Gold Coast. However, 14.3 per cent of aged care beds in development application are located in the Gold Coast. 

Urbis research indicates that 42 per cent of South East Queensland residents aged 85 years and older are currently residing in aged care establishments. In 2011, 1.64 per cent of the South East Queensland population consisted of residents 85 years and older. The ABS estimates this will grow to 3.35 per cent by 2036.



As the population of South East Queensland continues to age, the demand for quality aged care will continue to grow.


Brisbane City Council has also just released its planning incentives for aged care facilities and retirement living.

For more information contact one of our Queensland property experts below.

Ben Slack View Profile
Malcolm Aikman View Profile
Stephanie Wyeth View Profile
James Tuma View Profile
Kris Krpan View Profile
Ben Weaver View Profile
Paul Riga View Profile
Leila Collins View Profile
Nicholas Stevenson View Profile
Matthew Schneider View Profile