The 30 Australian locations tipped to become working from home hotspots

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on October 30, 2020
The 30 Australian locations tipped to become working from home hotspots

Photo by Shubham Sharma on Unsplash

New analysis has revealed which towns may be the biggest winners of the working from home revolution.

Buyer's agency Propertyology tipped Byron Bay as Australia's best community prototype to have already adopted the work from home (WFH) demographic. 

“A significant 13.4% of Byron’s workforce nominated ‘home’ as their primary work address at the 2016 Census. That is 3-times the national average of 4.7%,” Propertyology Head of Research Simon Pressley said. 

Buying a home or looking to refinance? The table below features home loans with some of the lowest variable interest rates on the market for owner occupiers.

Lender

Variable
More details
UNLIMITED REDRAWSSPECIAL OFFER
  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
UNLIMITED REDRAWSSPECIAL OFFER

Smart Booster Home Loan Discounted Variable - 2yr (LVR < 80%)

  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
Variable
More details
AN EASY DIGITAL APPLICATION
  • No ongoing fees - None!
  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Easy online application, find out if you're approved quick!
  • Redraw- Access your additional payments if you need them
  • Use the app to get loan insights to help you pay off your home loan faster
AN EASY DIGITAL APPLICATION

Neat Variable Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (LVR < 60%)

  • No ongoing fees - None!
  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Easy online application, find out if you're approved quick!
  • Redraw- Access your additional payments if you need them
  • Use the app to get loan insights to help you pay off your home loan faster
Variable
More details
100% FULL OFFSET ACCOUNTNO APPLICATION FEE OR ONGOING FEES
  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services
100% FULL OFFSET ACCOUNTNO APPLICATION FEE OR ONGOING FEES

Low Rate Home Loan - Prime (Principal and Interest) (Owner Occupied) (LVR < 60%)

  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services
Variable
More details
NSW/VIC/SA METRO & INNER REGIONAL AREAS$5000 CASHBACK. T&Cs APPLY.
  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services
NSW/VIC/SA METRO & INNER REGIONAL AREAS$5000 CASHBACK. T&Cs APPLY.

Variable Home Loan (Principal and Interest)

  • No upfront or ongoing fees
  • 100% full offset account
  • Extra repayments + redraw services

Base criteria of: a $400,000 loan amount, variable, fixed, principal and interest (P&I) home loans with an LVR (loan-to-value) ratio of at least 80%. However, the ‘Compare Home Loans’ table allows for calculations to be made on variables as selected and input by the user. All products will list the LVR with the product and rate which are clearly published on the Product Provider’s web site. Monthly repayments, once the base criteria are altered by the user, will be based on the selected products’ advertised rates and determined by the loan amount, repayment type, loan term and LVR as input by the user/you. *The Comparison rate is based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. Warning: this comparison rate is true only for this example and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate. Rates correct as of May 25, 2022. View disclaimer.

Mr Pressley also pointed to the ease of access Byron Bay had to nearby cities like Brisbane and the Gold Coast, as well as the beach lifestyle it offered. 

“It’s no coincidence that Byron’s airport passenger volumes have exploded over the last 20-years," he said.

"The airport ranking has significantly improved from being Australia’s 40th biggest carrier in 1993-94 to 17th in 2019-20.”

Byron has one of the largest WFH cohorts in the country, despite only having a population of 35,000, and also boasts the highest median house price in the country ($995,000 in June 2020). 

“Over the last 20-years, no Australian location, capital city or region, had a higher average annual rate of capital growth than Byron," Mr Pressley said.

"One shouldn’t underestimate the role that work-from-home played in this outcome.”

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Mr Pressley said the key location criteria for WFH was a relaxed lifestyle, coupled with two-hour access to capital cities by car, plane, or train. 

Other locations with a high portion of WFH at the 2016 census were: 

  • Coastal locations: Surf Coast VIC (12.8%), Kiama NSW (11.4%), Noosa QLD (10.8%), Esperance WA (8.8%), Ballina NSW (8.3%), Bass Coast VIC (8%), Victor Harbour SA (6.9%)
  • Winery and foodie cultures: Adelaide Hills SA (13.8%), Macedon Ranges VIC (11.1%), Margaret River WA (8.7%), Mornington Peninsula VIC (8%)
  • Other inland wonders: Golden Plains VIC (16.9%), Scenic Rim QLD (12.3%), Maleny QLD (11.9%), Warragul VIC (9.2%), Armidale NSW (6.8%)

Propertyology found other locations with WFH appeal included Orange, Cessnock and Albury (in NSW), Cairns, Townsville, Hervey Bay and Yeppoon (in QLD), Kingscliff and Batemans Bay (in NSW), Bendigo and Warrnambool (in VIC), Hobart and Launceston (in Tasmania), and Geraldton (in Western Australia).

rsz_top30wfh02

What's the scope of the WFH phenomenon?

With millions of Australians forced to WFH in the last six months, Mr Pressley said the scope of the shift was considerable. 

“Imagine if Australia’s total WFH workforce increased to just 10%," he said.

"That would mean that, in a country with 10.5 million households, 1.3 million people would be earning their income with ‘home’ being their workplace.”

He conceded WFH wasn't for everyone, but predicted some people would adopt it as their new normal. 

“Some will go one-step further and move town to do it from their dream location. Some have already done it!”

Propertyology pointed out 46% of the 13 million strong Australian workforce could WFH with little to no impact on their performance. 

“Examples of roles that can comfortably service their customers no matter where they live include lawyers, accountants, journalists, mortgage brokers, call-centre operators, engineers, marketing consultants, web designers, analysts, and graphic designers," Mr Pressley said. 

He added, unless you were living under a rock it was obvious there would be "a transference of housing demand away from congested and expensive capital cities and towards more relaxed parts of regional Australia".


Disclaimers

The entire market was not considered in selecting the above products. Rather, a cut-down portion of the market has been considered. Some providers' products may not be available in all states. To be considered, the product and rate must be clearly published on the product provider's web site. Savings.com.au, yourmortgage.com.au, yourinvestmentpropertymag.com.au, and Performance Drive are part of the Savings Media group. In the interests of full disclosure, the Savings Media Group are associated with the Firstmac Group. To read about how Savings Media Group manages potential conflicts of interest, along with how we get paid, please visit the web site links at the bottom of this page.

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Alex joined Savings.com.au as a finance journalist in 2019. He enjoys covering in-depth economical releases and breaking down how they might affect the everyday punter. He is passionate about providing Australians with the information and tools needed to make them financially stable for their futures.

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