Australian property trends: serviced apartments and Melbourne’s rise


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The Independent Online

Only a few years ago, buying a property in the UK was seen as a sure-fire way to make money. However, the property market is now seemingly stuck in a period of prolonged stagnation and buyers and developers are looking at other regions and countries to invest. It seems like a long time since the days of guaranteed returns and increasing values.

So where’s a good place to invest then? Virtually the entire Western world has seen house prices crumble since 2007 but Australia's residential market has defied gravity. And there has been a recent resurgence in buyer activity after a relatively tough year – with many industry publications and news sources speculating that now is the time to buy.

The attention of many potential migrators and investors turns towards Australia at this time of year too, and this statement is backed up by online data: Google Trends - a search tool that shows Google searches change over time – reveals large spikes in Google searches for terms like ' buy serviced apartments in Australia' over the weary winter months, especially in January.

So, for those beginning to look down under as the days darken, here’s a timely introduction to a couple of key trends in the Australian property market:

Serviced apartments on the up

Outside of Australia, the term ‘serviced apartments’ isn’t ubiquitously known. The aforementioned search tool, Google Trends, shows that searches for serviced apartments are almost uniformly concentrated in Australia. However, serviced apartments are handy for foreign investors to know about as they can be a safe investment option with secure returns.

To elaborate basically, a serviced apartment is a fully-furnished apartment-style property that’s available for short-term or long-term stays and these apartments are commonly used in Australia, especially by business customers, with most serviced apartment operators receiving full or solid bookings throughout the year.

These apartments can be bought as well as rented, with attractive advantages such as solid rental return of six per cent plus and predictable annual returns from consistently-high tenancies. And with the Australian property market comparatively buoyant there’s the opportunity to make money via capital growth.

Key link: Quest Properties is a trusted company that sells serviced apartments in some of Australia’s most attractive regions – from Melbourne to Launceston.

Melbourne’s growing reputation

There are many attractive locations in Australia but some places are becoming more desirable (and potentially more lucrative) than others. Melbourne is one location that’s growing in both national and international renown.

Over the past few months, the results of the yearly ‘world’s most liveable’ surveys appeared again and Melbourne featured highly in most lists – including right at the top of the most eminent list by The EIU (Economist Intelligence Unit). This popular attainment resulted in a slew of international coverage, particularly in Vancouver, Canada, after the city was deposed from the top-spot in 2010.

Admittedly, these studies can be a bit superficial and Anglo-centric, but Melbourne is a top destination in practical respects too – the city is one of the fastest growing in Australia and projected to overtake Sydney as the country’s largest city within the next three decades if comparative growth remains unchanged.

The Victorian city’s increasing growth and reputation is good news for investors looking to buy in a sought-after city where values could quickly increase. Budding investors could even combine both of the trends above with a serviced apartment in Melbourne.

So, if you’re one of the many brits taking an interest in Australia at this time of year then then a sound investment could be at least helped by taking note of the two trends above. Good luck!