Can I Afford a Rural Sea or Tree Change? How To Finance the Lifestyle Dream

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With COVID still enticing many people to leave the city in search of a more peaceful existence somewhere a little less chaotic and peaceful, tree change relocations are more popular than ever.

With The Block now focusing on getaways to the country town of Gisborne Victoria and leaving the city, we have plenty of advice on what to do, but how do we fund such a radical shift in lifestyle while also making sure it makes sense economically?

Regional cities like Hervey Bay and Maryborough offer a peaceful lifestyle at a very affordable price tag. You can view our current properties listed for sale here. Brian Thompson, senior broker sales manager at Property Brokerage recommends looking at property prices over time in the area to ensure that moving corresponds with your own objectives.

If you are unfamiliar with the Hervey Bay or Maryborough areas, be sure to take a good look at our regional guides about the suburbs, localities, and available services as this information may be useful in helping you analyze the neighbourhood and compare various costs.

Tree Change Median City Property Prices Vs Regional Property Prices

Selling a current city residence and using the earnings to finance a new one is one common way that individuals finance a major relocation. Although house prices in regional areas of Australia have increased significantly over the last two years, prices often remain far lower than what homeowners obtain for their apartments or homes in the larger capital cities.

According to the most recent Domain, average price indexes confirm that residential property prices in regional NSW increased dramatically over the previous year by 23.3%, but the median house price is still just $740,000, while in regional Victoria they increased by 19.9% to $590.000. The median sale price in Sydney has increased by just 8.3%, but it is now $1.552 million, and the median in Melbourne has increased by 5.2% to $1.074 million.

A little closer to Hervey Bay— the median Brisbane property prices are currently sitting at $762,000 with average prices in Hervey Bay and Maryborough still well below these averages, making a tree change move highly desirable as well as, exceptionally affordable.

Others with some doubt, and who are less certain about embarking on a significant change may opt to rent first thereby determining whether they will enjoy their new lives or not. By choosing to rent out their own home, it is easier for them to return if they decide that they don’t like the new area. Likewise, any rent received as a property owner pays any outgoing expenses incurred such as a temporary rental, etc.

Median Rent Prices Rural Vs City

Naturally, rents in city areas of Australia are substantially higher than those in rural regional Australia.

Currently, the typical rent for a home in Sydney is $620 per week, while the median rent for a unit is $525 per week, as opposed to $520 and $400, respectively, for the rest of NSW. As opposed to $420 and $320 in rural Victoria, a home will now cost $460 a week in Melbourne and a unit would cost $410. Brisbane median rent prices are at $620pw for a house and $450pw for a unit which is on par with other large city prices.

Hervey Bay and Maryborough too have seen rises in rentals across the board, but these are slowly coming back down with median Hervey Bay house rentals now at about $420-$450pw. Your real estate dollars go a lot further in rural areas— but there are also many other reasons that people appreciate a Maryborough or Hervey Bay rural tree change.

Be sure to check our latest suburb profile reports regarding Hervey Bay & Maryborough Median Property and Rental Prices

latest hervey bay maryborough real estate suburb reports

Many buyers after having relocated state that they want to stay forever despite foregoing the conveniences of living close to a larger city.  Hervey Bay and Maryborough both have everything you need including great shopping, schools, transport, and medical services to cater to most family and lifestyle dynamics. The Sunshine Coast, Brisbane, and Gold Coast municipalities are only three, four, and five hours by car respectively. There are also trains, buses, and direct flights that service these areas from Hervey Bay and Maryborough regularly.

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Repayments Calculator

There’s a lot to consider when calculating how to finance a relocation, from your monthly payback amount, refinancing options, equity, etc.

Do you want to maintain ownership of both city and rural homes, sell and then buy, or vice-versa? You might want to keep both properties as part of your portfolio of real estate and to have a wider range of alternatives.

You can refinance to purchase another house if you’ve amassed a lot of equity in your property in metropolitan centres like, for example, Sydney or Melbourne, where prices have increased so much in the previous two years. Perhaps you can acquire an additional house closer to your family and hang onto all of them. It’s really up to the individual. With the rental market being in such good shape, that income may comfortably cover any debt incurred.

Of course, some people choose to cash in on their lucrative city real estate for a tree change at a reduced price, thereby pocketing the difference into superannuation, a term deposit, savings, or another suitable investment opportunity.

Equity Calculator

When determining the amount of equity, you might be able to obtain, there are certain difficulties to be aware of. Many people assume they can work from home remotely from their new regional locations, but they should confirm that before they relocate.

Some businesses are now requesting that their employees return to the office, and if the workplace move is not close to an accessible commute, that might prove to be quite difficult long term.

Additionally, there are certain outliers even if banks are now willing to lend for local purchases because that market is now seen as robust. Most banks now accept loan-to-value ratios of up to 95% because they view the regional markets as being stable unless the area is exceptionally remote with little access to necessities. Likewise, investing in a region with a very volatile market, such as one where mining is the only industry, is another thing best avoided.

Brian also suggests potential tree-changers research any additional expenditures associated with their shift that they would not have otherwise considered. He also states that if you have always lived in a city area, it’s important to consider expenses that might not be at the forefront of your mind. Examples include pest control, property maintenance, and potential environmental dangers to your property, such as floods which may affect your insurance prices, etc.

Ready to Move to Hervey Bay or Maryborough for a Stunning Coastal or Tree Change?

All in all, a relocation to the gorgeous coastal city of Hervey Bay or the nearby rural township of Maryborough is just what you might need. Ready to take the plunge? Call Property Brokerage for more information.

Hervey Bay Sea Tree Change

We also have some great Hervey Bay Turnkey House and Land Packages available throughout the Urangan and Kawungan areas. Be sure to check these out as a brand new ready-to-move-in home may be perfect for your needs.

*Of course, you can always drop into our office at Whale Bay Marina Urangan for a chat about buying property in Hervey Bay and Maryborough, or anything else you might like to find out about.

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