Removalist booking platform Muval has revealed for the 15th month in a row, Melbourne is the most in demand city to move to in Australia, pulling in 25% of all inbound metro moving enquiries in May.

The majority of these enquiries were from Sydney, although many Brisbane and Perth residents were also looking to move to the Victorian capital.

Almost a third (32%) of all outbound enquiries in May were from Sydney, marking 18 straight months where close to one-in-three of all outbound enquiries were people heading out of Sydney.

Net negative migration from Sydney is -55%, which Muvall CEO James Morrell said indicates "the cost of living exodus could be on par with Covid."

"This is in line with the -50-60% seen throughout 2022, showing that Sydney has been on the nose for well over a year," Mr Morrell said.

Although Melbourne also continues to have net negative migration (-15%), it remains well above the peak reached in August 2020 of -61%.


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Update resultsUpdate
LenderHome LoanInterest Rate Comparison Rate* Monthly Repayment Repayment type Rate Type Offset Redraw Ongoing Fees Upfront Fees LVR Lump Sum Repayment Additional Repayments Split Loan Option TagsFeaturesLinkCompare
6.04% p.a.
6.06% p.a.
Principal & Interest
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5.99% p.a.
5.90% p.a.
Principal & Interest
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  • No application or ongoing fees. Annual rate discount
  • Unlimited redraws & additional repayments. LVR <80%
  • A low-rate variable home loan from a 100% online lender. Backed by the Commonwealth Bank.
6.09% p.a.
6.11% p.a.
Principal & Interest
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Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

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. Some products will be marked as promoted, featured or sponsored and may appear prominently in the tables regardless of their attributes. All products will list the LVR with the product and rate which are clearly published on the product provider’s website. 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 . View disclaimer.

The areas Aussies are moving to...

  • Melbourne - While net migration remains negative, inbound enquiries continue to increase, and Mr Morrell expects the city to "continue to fill back up."
  • Ballarat - Mr Morrell also said as migration to Melbourne continues to grow, Muvall anticipate a spill over to Ballarat, the third largest city in Victoria.
  • Sunshine Coast - While down from a pandemic peak of more than 500%+, positive net migration to the Sunny Coast is still more than 100%. The majority of the traffic is coming from Brisbane and Sydney, but there was also increased interest from Canberra, Adelaide, Hobart, and Geelong.
  • Perth - Perth continues to have the strongest net migration in the country, but showed signs of a slowdown, slipping from an average of above 100% net migration for the year to 86% in May. However, only 8% of outbound enquiries were from Perth.
  • Byron Bay - Interest to move to Byron in Jan-May of 2023 was up 46% from the same time last year. 
  • Newcastle - With living costs and expensive housing seeing many Sydneysiders looking for an alternative, Newcastle might be one of the main beneficiaries. Muvall said interest to move to Newcastle has risen 90% during the first half of this year compared to last year. Mr Morrell said it would likely be one of many areas to experience something similar in the coming months. "We can see that any area between Sydney and Newcastle that is offering better affordability than Sydney is heating up, with Gosford and Woy Woy standing out on the Central Coast. Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour are starting to simmer as we’re seeing some small spikes of traffic in and out of these coastal towns," he said.

...And where they are leaving

  • Sydney - Melbourne, Brisbane, and Perth are now in higher demand than Sydney, once considered the most liveable city in the country. Migration from Sydney has been negative over the last few years, and with house prices forecast to grow 6-9% in the coming financial year, this could continue.
  • Adelaide - For the tenth straight month, net migration in Adelaide was negative, up to -18% in May compared to -9% in March.
  • Cairns - While net migration remains positive, interest in Cairns is cooling up, with 50% more outbound enquiries in Jan-May than the same time last year. There continues to be large movement from Brisbane, but Mr Morrell said this might have been "cashed up city buyers snapping up what may be some of the last bargains."
  • Gold Coast - It is a similar story on the Gold Coast, with growing interest to move out and inbound enquiries waning. Net migration was 540% at one stage in 2021, but it seems many now feel there are more affordable waterfront locations to choose from. Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Central Coast, Hobart, and Gladstone were all among the top ten most popular areas those leaving the GC were headed.
  • Brisbane - 19% of outbound enquiries were from Brisbane, a record high. Although it was the second most popular city to move to (22%), it's on the way down, with many residents packing their bags and moving to the likes of Melbourne and Perth, as well as regional Queensland areas like Rockhampton or Toowoomba.

The cheapest suburbs in Australia to have a mortgage

Proptrack also published its list of the top ten most serviceable suburbs in the country, where average mortgage repayments are the smallest proportion of average income.

As you might expect, rural areas dominated, although for units, several suburbs in Greater Perth made the list.


Average income Average monthly mortgage repayments Mortgage repayments as a share of income
Fisherman Bay (Rest of SA) $61,000 $270 2.7%
Kambalda West (Rest of WA) $92,000 $670 4.4%
Blackwater (Rest of QLD) $98,900 $860 5.2%
Charleville (Rest of QLD) $62,300 $710 6.9%
Roxby Downs (Rest of SA) $112,400 $1,320 7.0%
Moura (Rest of QLD) $74,100 $880 7.1%
Cloncurry (Rest of QLD) $85,100 $1,050 7.4%
Cobar (Rest of NSW) $75,600 $950 7.5%
Port Pirie West (Rest of SA) $59,700 $760 7.6%
Broken Hill (Rest of NSW) $66,200 $860 7.7%


Average income Average monthly mortgage repayments Mortgage repayments as a share of income
Mosman Park (Greater Perth) $170,200 $1,660 5.9%
South Gladstone (Rest of QLD) $78,100 $810 6.2%
Emerald (Rest of QLD) $89,700 $950 6.4%
West End (Townsville-QLD) $85,700 $1,020 7.2%
Wembley (Greater Perth) $114,000 $1,380 7.3%
South Hedland (Rest of WA) $98,700 $1,240 7.5%
Cottesloe (Greater Perth) $331,100 $4,320 7.8%
Manunda (Rest of QLD) $69,200 $920 8.0%
Hermit Park (Rest of QLD) $68,700 $950 8.3%
Bungalow (Rest of QLD) $69,200 $970 8.4%

Data from Proptrack

Picture by Denise Jans on Unsplash

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