30 Mar 2016

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28 March 2016

New York-style apartments are popping up in our inner city suburbs as often as trendy cafes.

Perhaps the two go hand in hand.

High-rise residential towers with stylish interiors, sweeping views and yes, even on-site cafes, are making it easier for a younger and perhaps less cashed-up crowd to move closer to the CBD.

“[Younger buyers] have found the detached housing market hard to get into and the apartment market is a more affordable option,” said BIS Shrapnel senior manager Angie Zigomanis. “As cities get bigger and more congested, many who work in the city would also like it to be easier to commute to and from work.”

To their credit, residential developers saw the shift years ago and have since zeroed in on areas next to our CBDs like Redfern and Chippendale in Sydney, Newstead in Brisbane and South Yarra in Melbourne.

Take for example, the Duo at Central Park building in Chippendale, which offers resort style amenities like a mixed-use recreation room and rooftop barbecue area.

Duo at Central Park in Sydney offers trendy amenities like a rooftop barbecue area and other communal spaces. Source: http://www.news.com.au

It’s advertising stylish one bedroom suites for $700,000, a virtual bargain amid Sydney’s extravagant prices.

A quick aside — the block was designed by well-known architects Foster and Partners, the firm behind new luxury apartments on the corner of Lexington and 53rd Street in New York’s mid-town area, among many others.

Similarly, two bedroom apartments in the New Charsfield project on St Kilda Road in Melbourne are going for $620,000, according to Realestate.com.au. In Manhattan-like fashion, the building also offers views of local parks and an outdoor terrace and garden.

There’s also Melbourne’s Arthur Apartments, which actually boasts ‘New York style living on Albert Park Lake’, starting at around $445,000 for a one bedroom.

Meanwhile in Albion in Brisbane, prospective buyers will soon find 180-degree views of the city skyline in The Hudson building from $370,000, only six kilometres from the CBD.

A shortage of land has seen high-rise units dominate new building figures lately.

This is just the tip of the iceberg.

A shortage of land has seen high-rise units dominate new building figures lately.

For example, about 64 per cent of the 115,752 multi-unit approvals in 2015 were for buildings of more than four storeys, according to CoreLogic RP Data.

And the capitals are seeing the most action, with around 80,000 apartments under construction and another 117,000 approved or in the off-the-plan marketing phase, a recent CommBank report showed.

As you might expect, many of these new blocks will be in inner city areas, including the Melbourne and Adelaide CBDs, Newstead and Wolloongabba in Brisbane, Mascot in Sydney and Southbank in Melbourne, said CommBank.

So for those dreaming of a Sex And The City or Gossip Girl experience in their hometown, don’t fret — there’ll be plenty of options.

The Hudson, Albion, will have beautiful views. Source: http://www.news.com.au

While population growth has helped change the way we look at city life, overseas migration has played a specific role in our appetite for high-rise living.

For example, most states have been taking in new residents with a median age of 26 or 27, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. This has surely helped developers cater their units to a younger crowd, whether they’re owner-occupiers or renting tenants.

“Overseas migration over the last 10 years has been running at almost twice the average of the previous decade and a big component of that has been temporary migrants,” said Zigomanis.

“So there are people who will stay 12 months on various visas who want to sample all that city has to offer and get there easily from wherever they are. That’s also been a key contributor. The inner city offers an outside of working hours lifestyle of cafes, places to eat and bars to go drink at.”

There’s been massive growth in education from the foreign market, particularly in Melbourne. And on the back of that has come demand for accommodation in the inner city.

Within this group there are many students, too, especially from Asia, said director of international property economics at Urbis, Peter Holland.

“The Asian student population is used to living in the inner city in high rises and are very comfortable,” said Holland. “Some are living in their parents’ investments, some are just renting. There’s been massive growth in education from the foreign market, particularly in Melbourne. And on the back of that has come demand for accommodation in the inner city.”

Holland said that the inner city has become a more attractive place to live because there are simply more options.

“Previously there just wasn’t enough happening, and it was quiet on the weekend and you didn’t have the level of shopping. That’s changing,” said Holland.

“You start to get a critical mass and you also get improved facilities for a population that’s living in that area. There’s also more of a variety of product to choose from, which range from cheaper $400,000 apartments to $10m, and so it becomes an affordable option for some people to enter the housing market in the inner city.

“For that pre-family, young professional adults it’s a pretty good place to live. Exciting, vibrant, lots of people and a great place to hang out.”

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