The popularity and demand for apartment living in Perth continues to be strong, as noted in recent studies.
According to the Perth High Density Apartment Report, published by Master Builders and Y Research in March 2015, apartments now account for more than 20% of all building approvals in WA.
Approval data shows the proportion for detached housing such as flats, units, townhouses and apartments in Perth also rose and was 27 per cent by the end of 2014, up 11% from 2009. So what is driving this step away from the typical Australian dream of a family home on a big block in the suburbs?
- People want to be where the action is.
Unlike new residential estates on the outskirts of suburbia, apartment living allows people to live closer to the CBD and surrounding established suburbs. Nightlife, public transport and easy access to all amenities are attractive features to create both high owner occupancy and high demand rental properties.
According to the Real Estate Institute of WA (REIWA), Perth’s median home price is around $530,000, whilst the average apartment costs around $420,000. The large cost saving of choosing a unit or townhouse over a traditional home is allowing people to enter the market place, or move to a location which may otherwise be out of their price range. The lower pricing is also attractive to investors looking to expand their portfolios.
- Lower maintenance
Without acres of lawn to mow or gardens to attend to, apartments offer a low maintenance alternative perfect for investors and owner occupiers alike. Outdoor areas of units and townhouses are likely to have been carefully planned to provide purposeful entertaining areas, rather than just space left over after a dwelling has been situated on a block. In larger developments, there may be strata fees or body corporate fees which cover items such as the maintenance of communal areas and gardens as well as any amenities the complex may have.
- Smaller home – less costs to keep!
With a smaller average living area than a traditional home, furnishing your new apartment is also more affordable. Decorating and personal touches can be added on a smaller scale therefore ensuring the longevity of cost saving benefits. And when it comes time to completely refresh and renovate, the lower quantities of materials required may allow owners to select a higher end finish for the same cost as an average finish on a larger home.
- Lock and leave lifestyle
Whether a young professional couple or an active family, apartments and townhouses offer the perfect lock and leave lifestyle. With very little to worry about maintaining, there is less concern for owner occupiers and investors alike and allows people to get on with living their lives.
- Increased safety and security
Many people may find comfort in the security aspect of apartment or townhouse living. Having neighbours close ensures that more people may be keeping an eye out for your new home, whilst the construction of the dwelling itself may be less attractive to potential thieves.
- Potential resale
All of the items above lead to one point – the resale potential of your home. Although marketplaces ebb and flow, having a well located, low maintenance, secure and affordable property will always let your property tick all the boxes on the checklist. Apartments and townhouses also rent well, with a current vacancy rate of 3.8%.