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Where is the next Byron Bay?


By Nerida Conisbee, Chief Economist, Ray White

This week I took another look at the “Where is the next Byron Bay” analysis I did mid-year. This time, however, I am no longer restricting the search to beachside as there are a heap of inland areas where people like to holiday, and have the potential to achieve “Byron Bay” status

For my highly scientific analysis, I am putting in the following criteria:

  1. It no longer needs to be near the beach but does need to be somewhere where people like to holiday.
  2. It can’t be within easy commuting distance to a capital city.
  3. It has to be priced at or under $1 million.
  4. It has to be achieving decent price growth already, at least 20 per cent.
  5. Rental growth also has to be strong, at least five per cent per annum.
  6. Long-term growth has to be solid with annual growth of more than five per cent per annum over 10 years.
  7. I haven’t visited all these areas with this criteria, so I am relying on internet searches to see whether the area is particularly attractive.

Orange, New South Wales

Yamba still fits the bill for a Byron Bay potential but as an inland alternative, Orange also fits all the criteria. Orange has a median of $545,000 and has seen 20.8 per cent price growth over past 12 months. It is also a very desirable place to visit.

Orange has a lot to offer. It is in a beautiful region, has lots of fun stuff to do and has an attractive main street. It has also growth into a particularly popular tourist destination.

Bright, Victoria

In this update, I have taken Cape Woolamai off the list as its rental growth has slowed too much over the past 12 months. It is still however a very desirable place to buy a holiday home with prices having risen 34 percent over the past 12 months.

As an alternative inland Byron Bay, Bright covers all the criteria. It currently has a median of $820,000 and has seen 27.6 percent price growth. While it doesn’t have a beach, it does have a river which you can swim in. Plus it is close to the snowfields of Mount Hotham and Falls Creek. It also has a nice town centre.

Bicheno, Tasmania

Penguin, my pick for Tasmania’s Byron Bay, still makes the list but now I am more interested in Bicheno. Bicheno has a median of $565,000 and has seen 30 percent price growth.

Bicheno is located on the east coast of Tasmania, has a beautiful beach and is close to one of the best diving spots in Australia. It also has a large range of places to eat and an annual Food and Wine Festival. It is also a popular holiday destination.

Airlie Beach, Queensland

My past pick, Palm Cove, seemed a bit far away for more people so this time I am choosing Airlie Beach in the Whitsundays. The town has a median of $881,000 and has seen 30 percent price growth. There is a lot to do – it is close to both the Great Barrier Reef and to the Whitsundays. Plus, there is a lot to do in the town itself such as nice restaurants, swimming and further afield, hiking.

Gnarabup, Western Australia

I had Dunsborough but price growth has slowed too much. So, instead, I have chosen Gnarabup, close to Margaret River. Gnarabup just scrapes in with a median of $1 million and has seen price growth of 37 percent. It is located on the mouth of Margaret River and has the longest and most popular beach in the region. It is also a very nice place to visit for a beachside holiday

Robe, South Australia

There are a lot of beautiful beaches just outside of Adelaide but given one of my criteria was that the town had to not be within commuting distance to a capital city, I had to look a bit further afield. For this month’s update, I am sticking to Robe on the Limestone Coast. It is relatively affordable with a median of $452,000. It has nice beaches and an historic town centre and sounds like a pretty relaxed place to visit.

Nerida Conisbee

Chief Economist

Ray White

Main image: DepositPhotos