It’s no secret that Ballarat was the apple of many a homebuyer and investor’s eye over the past decade or so.
Its location just 100 kilometres from Melbourne, coupled with its relative housing affordability and diverse local economy, saw the region’s property market post solid growth for a number of years.
However, all of the reasons why the region as a whole made savvy investment sense then still stands – albeit with some more specific targeting to root out the very best opportunities.
Don’t disregard Delacombe
One area that has been showing plenty of promise is the large and rapidly growing suburb of Delacombe, which is on the formerly rural, but now much more urbanised parts of Ballarat.
Delacombe forms a large part of the Ballarat West Growth Area where suburban development is encouraged by the City of Ballarat and the State Government of Victoria.
Much of the city’s planned subdivision for new housing estates is happening in Greenfield land in and around the west of the suburb and it is predicted to be home to over 12,000 residents in 2030.
Plus, according to data analysis of the latest Census, the Delacombe statistical area’s population has soared some 85 per cent in the decade to 2021.
This growing suburb is in the midst of a transformation thanks to an ambitious $50 million masterplan developed by the State Government. As part of the Big Housing Build scheme, more than 100 new modern and energy efficient dwellings will be built, sparking the construction of high-quality streets and open public spaces. Government agency Homes Victoria intends the masterplan to lay the groundwork for the long-term development of the suburb, benefiting current and future homeowners.
With this new development will come a younger population, too. Indeed, the area’s growth will be heavily influenced by the new housing opportunities, which is expected to attract predominantly young couples and families.
Property market performance
As I mentioned at the outset, Ballarat as a whole experienced strong property price growth long before the pandemic landed on our shores. Those price uplifts are currently on the backburner, though, which presents plenty of investment options for strategic investors and homebuyers.
Delacombe’s median house price of $520,000 has dipped nearly 10 per cent over the past 12 months, largely in line with market trends seen in major regional areas.
But that relatively affordable price tag will see first-home buyers, young families, and investors increasingly prioritise this patch. Plus, rental prices are rising – the median house rent of $410 is up by 7.9 per cent in the past year.
However, its median house price at the southern end of the $500,000 price range means that Delacombe is an affordable location for investors seeking accessible entry price points. In fact, Delacombe’s property prices are still lower than much of the rest of regional Victoria as the graph above shows, which is a moment in time that won’t last forever, trust me.
The area also has a very high percentage of homeowners, and we all know that it is homeowners – rather than investors – who underpin future price growth after all.