Melbourne’s little brother is growing up.
It was surveyed and established just three weeks after the Victorian capital and has worn a lot of hats throughout its history. Originally it was developed as an important shipping and rail hub, but by the 1960s, thanks to its wool and paper mills, it had grown into one of the nation’s dominant manufacturers. More recently, it has turned itself into a modern metropolis, shifting its economy away from manufacturing and towards innovation.
This change, along with Melbourne’s skyrocketing property prices, has attracted a new wave of residents to Geelong. Now a town of 250,000, it is fast becoming Australia’s leading non-capital city.
There are more than enough reasons to move to Geelong. The more pressing question, perhaps, is what you should invest in. And with new communities popping up in and around the city, house and land packages in Geelong are becoming an ever more popular option.
Why buy in Geelong?
Before we take a closer look at Geelong house and land packages, let’s first take a closer look at the city itself, and the lifestyle it offers its residents.
Home to a quarter of a million, every new resident has an opportunity to find a community in Geelong. The population has been growing at a faster rate than the national and Victorian averages in recent times, with Melbourne’s surging house prices and a diversifying local economy seen as contributing factors.
The bulk of residents identify as anglo-saxon, with almost 80% born in Australia (compared to 65% for Victoria as a whole.) Geelong’s average age of 40 is also three years higher than the rest of the state.
Geelong is often referred to as a gateway city, boasting an excellent location between Ballarat in the northwest, Torquay and the Great Ocean Road in the southwest, and Melbourne in the northeast. Residents can be in the Melbourne CBD within 75 minutes by car, and 60 minutes by express train.
But in truth, there’s no reason to leave Geelong at all. Education and healthcare services are every bit as comprehensive as you’d expect from a large, modern city, the shopping and dining opportunities are almost as good as Melbourne. And, unlike the state capital, you’re only ever a short drive from nature; do you prefer the crashing waves of the south coast or the tranquil wetlands of Lake Connewarre Wildlife Reserve?
Geelong is becoming ever more connected too. It boasts a robust public bus network, with ten routes servicing the city and surrounds, while residents can also utilise taxi and Uber services.
In a decade when the Melbourne property market went up and up before falling, Geelong managed growth that was somewhat less volatile. The average purchase price for houses in the centre of town sat at a little over $450,000 in 2012 and rose to over $730,000 by the end of 2018. Since then, a minor dip has taken values back to around the $700,000 mark, still a quarter of a million dollars above where they were just eight years ago.
While the Geelong CBD is unsurprisingly the most in-demand region, the city’s steady growth has seen new communities cropping up in once-empty satellite suburbs such as Armstrong Creek and Leopold, and has contributed to the increasing popularity of nearby townships like Bellarine. And the great thing about buying in a relatively small city is that these new communities are only ever a 15 or a 20-minute drive from the very centre of town, all while taking you away from the hustle and bustle and into the fresh country air.
Where to find House and Land packages in Geelong
- Watermark, Armstrong Creek
- Allure, Leopold
- Jetty North, Bellarine
And so we come to house and land packages. What makes them such an enticing option? The temptation is three-fold; One, you get a brand new home built to your needs, two, you get it on an often generous parcel of land, and three, you get all this at a price you can afford.
As mentioned above, new construction projects are currently concentrated in newly developing satellite suburbs. Here are three of the most exciting.
Watermark, Armstrong Creek
Ten minutes to the Geelong CBD, 10 minutes to the pristine surf beaches of the south, but with everything you need right there on your doorstep - Watermark is the sort of development that makes you wonder why anyone would choose to live anywhere else. Thoughtfully designed and packed with amenities, you’ll scarcely believe that a four-bedroom house and land package can be secured for under $500,000.
Allure is a community designed for those who appreciate Victoria’s unique nature. Located in the suburb of Leopold, wedged between Corio Bay and Lake Connewarre 15 minutes west of Geelong, here you’ll wake to the sound of birds, and go to sleep with the moon reflecting off the nearby water. And when the working week is done, the nearby Bellarine Peninsula offers the opportunity for further relaxation. House and land are selling fast, so this slice of paradise won’t be available forever.
Jetty North, Bellarine
Ever wanted to take yourself away on a permanent holiday? A 30-minute drive from Geelong, Jetty North, is found around the bay and up the Bellarine Peninsula and offers its residents precisely that. Wake up to the gently lapping waves of the bay, breathe in the pure air, and enjoy all the perks of country living while still within striking distance of big city convenience. A three-bedroom house and land package can be secured for less than $450,000, so what are you waiting for?
The recent turbulence of the Melbourne property market has hardly been felt in Geelong, and the city is attracting more and more attention because of it. Whether because of or despite this attention, property buyers can secure a slice of the Australian dream at a reasonable price, with the city being home to a healthy market of beautiful homes on generous blocks.
All in all, a Geelong house and land package is amongst the safest and most profitable investments a property buyer can make. And the savviest buyers are doing exactly that right now.