The 30 Australian locations tipped to become working from home hotspots

author-avatar By 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
Advertised rate Comparison rate Monthly repayment Rate TypeOffsetRedrawOngoing FeeUpfront FeesLVRLump Sum RepaymentAdditional RepaymentsPre-approval

VariableMore details
LIMITED TIME 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%
LIMITED TIME 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%
VariableMore details
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
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
VariableMore details
REFINANCE IN MINUTES, NOT WEEKS

Nano Home Loans Variable Owner Occupied, Principal and Interest (Refinance Only)

  • Refinance only. Fast online application
  • No Nano fees. Free 100% offset sub account
  • Mobile app, Visa debit card & instant payments
REFINANCE IN MINUTES, NOT WEEKS

Nano Home Loans Variable Owner Occupied, Principal and Interest (Refinance Only)

  • Refinance only. Fast online application
  • No Nano fees. Free 100% offset sub account
  • Mobile app, Visa debit card & instant payments
VariableMore details
YOU COULD WIN $100k TO PAY DOWN YOUR LOAN*

Owner Occupier Accelerates - Celebrate (LVR < 60%) (Principal and Interest)

  • For a chance to win $100K towards your home loan, apply with Athena before Oct 31 & be approved by Dec 15
  • We lower your rate based off how much you’ve paid down your loan
  • Automatic rate match
YOU COULD WIN $100k TO PAY DOWN YOUR LOAN*

Owner Occupier Accelerates - Celebrate (LVR < 60%) (Principal and Interest)

  • For a chance to win $100K towards your home loan, apply with Athena before Oct 31 & be approved by Dec 15
  • We lower your rate based off how much you’ve paid down your loan
  • Automatic rate match
VariableMore details
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^

Rates correct as of October 27, 2021. 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.”

rsztop30wfh01

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 which includes retail products from at least the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and Australia’s larger non-banks:

  • The big four banks are: ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac
  • The top 10 customer-owned Institutions are the ten largest mutual banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia, ranked by assets under management in November 2020. They are (in descending order): Great Southern Bank, Newcastle Permanent, Heritage Bank, Peoples’ Choice Credit Union, Teachers Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, IMB Bank, Beyond Bank, Bank Australia and P&N Bank.
  • The larger non-bank lenders are those who (in 2020) has more than $9 billion in Australian funded loans and advances. These groups are: Resimac, Pepper, Liberty and Firstmac.
  • If you click on a product link and you are referred to a Product or Service Provider’s web page, it is highly likely that a commercial relationship exists between that Product or Service Provider and Savings.com.au

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.

In the interests of full disclosure, Savings.com.au, Performance Drive and Loans.com.au are part of the Firstmac Group. To read about how Savings.com.au manages potential conflicts of interest, along with how we get paid, please click through onto the web site links.

*Comparison rate is based on a loan of $150,000 over a term of 25 years. Please note the comparison rate only applies to the examples given. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees and costs savings, such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan.

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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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