Welcome to the surf town with no empty rentals - it's at COVID capacity

Emilia Terzon
Swellnet Dispatch

The pandemic has brought on a property boom for surf towns as cashed-up city dwellers make a sea change. But while that is great for homeowners selling at high prices, it has created a nightmare for some renters.

Data supplied to ABC News by CoreLogic shows just how slim the availability of rental homes has become in several key coastal regions, including Byron Bay, Newcastle and the Gold Coast.

Demand has risen so far beyond supply that there is almost nothing sitting empty for potential renters.

Victoria's Surf Coast is the most impacted and has an official rental vacancy rate of zero.

The strip of coast an hour from Melbourne includes popular surf towns Torquay, Jan Juc and Anglesea.

Its rental market is always tight during the summer months as people flock to the beach.

But local real estate agent Simon Bogdanov said in the last four months there had been a "staggering increase in property demand" from Melbourne residents making a COVID sea change.

"The incoming enquiry level and applications from prospective tenants wanting to make the sea change has been overwhelming at times for our rental team," Mr Bogdanov said.

"Rentals are being snapped up in a matter of hours from being advertised.

"There is a 0 per cent vacancy rate. The last time this happened was over 30 years ago."

Another local real estate agent, Kellie Papworth, told ABC News that another factor putting pressure on vacancy rates was that some people who normally leased out their homes over summer were not doing this during the pandemic.

"Residents were also not taking risks to buy investments or upsize or move around, therefore creating fewer leasing opportunities," Ms Papworth said.

"We also saw a lot of tenants' employment affected by inability to travel internationally and ski fields being closed, resulting in those tenants needing to find alternate accommodation quickly."

It's not just the rental market that's getting more competitive.

CoreLogic data shows Surf Coast houses sold for almost 6 per cent more on average in December 2020 than they did one year earlier in December 2019.

That has officially pushed the region's average house price over the $1 million mark.

The situation is, of course, great for landlords who can rent out their homes easily and sell houses at high prices.

But it has also created a situation where some renters are giving up hope.

'It's utterly disheartening'

Serena Leitmanis and her partner both grew up on the Surf Coast and love its relaxed coastal lifestyle.

They moved to the regional city of Geelong, a 30-minute drive away, a few years ago to chase their careers but had always planned to move back near family and have a child enrolled at a school on the Surf Coast.

When they started looking at rentals midway through 2020, they quickly realised the rental market had escalated to new heights.

"Five years ago we were living in Jan Juc paying $270 [a week] for a house. Now we're lucky to get a non-renovated bedroom for $500 [a week]," she said.

"We've just stopped applying at this point because it's become too expensive.

"It's so competitive now.

"It's really utterly disheartening and we can't get home. It's breaking my heart."

Another locally born-and-bred single mother, who didn't want to be identified, told ABC News she had to move back in with her parents in Jan Juc after her Surf Coast rental lease ended and she could not find another one.

"It's always hard to find a house here but this is worse," she said.

"I'm not even bothering to look because there's just nothing. I don't have a huge budget and prices are increasing."

Another local single father whose Surf Coast lease ended just before Christmas told ABC News he had to move into a caravan on his friend's property because he could not find a new rental.

"Locals like myself are being forced into temporary emergency accommodation like my caravan situation," he said.

"I just don't feel very safe and secure and it's starting to take a toll on my physical and mental health.

"It's just totally unfair."

Some renters are frustrated after having homes that they were living in sold over summer to sea changers, putting them in a precarious position.

Some long-term locals are angry and feel they are not being prioritised for rentals.

Others worry that the relaxed nature of the region will be lost forever if locals are priced out of the region by sea changers.

"I now call it Toorak by the sea," one local said.

Ms Leitmanis compared the situation to when Byron Bay boomed and all the long-term locals moved inland into the more affordable Hinterland.

"The culture will change and that's a real shame," she said.

Frustrating situation for sea changers

But nobody technically owns a lifestyle, as much as locals would like to.

And if sea changers have the money to buy in to the Surf Coast, then the sky is the limit.

However, some are not in a position to do this and the rental squeeze is seeing some people from out of the region go into precarious arrangements too.

After enduring Victoria's two lockdowns, Jane Macdonald and her partner are so keen to leave Melbourne for the Surf Coast, they are taking a chance with a two-month lease.

"We've been excited to move to the Surf Coast, but since October we've watched rental availability dry up," Ms Macdonald said.

"At times it's felt quite hopeless.

"Networking with the local community helped us find a short-term lease with a private landlord. People have been really lovely.

"Fingers crossed we land a rental long-term!"

Speaking to the ABC earlier this week, CoreLogic analyst Tim Lawless said the substantial rise in property prices in regional Australia during the pandemic could see many town's affordability decline.

At least on Victoria's Surf Coast, that issue is already leading to heated debate.

© Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

Comments

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:48am

'Tis interesting to read these stats - all around rentals! - following our article last year about short term and long term population growth at major surfing regions.

https://www.swellnet.com/news/swellnet-analysis/2020/05/21/the-populatio...

Fooman's picture
Fooman's picture
Fooman commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 9:17pm

The coastal hamlets in this country used to be the bastions of escape for all people for decades. That is until money & wealth accumulation became the poison of choice for the elite in this sunburnt country!
Landlords & property owners who actually care about their rental tenants situations in keeping a roof over their heads are a rare & dying breed. Byron for example has had the good people who worked the jobs in cafes, restaurants, gardeners & retail etc... priced out of town & pushed further out in to the hinterland areas due to massively increased rents. Rest assured people that once the elite have snapped up everything in town near the coast that they will coming after these hinterland properties too as good old Aussie greed has no limits.
The solution......you may ask?
Write to your local M.P. & give them a kick in the pants & tell them to change they way this society rewards greedy, cashed up upper class, new age landed gentry. Tell them that you only need one house to live in & that once you have a million bucks that you can live on that for the rest of your life if you ARE SMART, not by making life miserable by kicking people out of their homes to make another million bucks. Money only cares about money in this country if YOU LET IT HAPPEN! Stop the rot & fight back! You know what is right for the future of this country. Join us & kick ass.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 12:24am

I'd prefer to kick arse, if it's all the same to you.

peelsy's picture
peelsy's picture
peelsy commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 3:52pm

Get out there and have a crack mate, stop complaining about prices, work hard and buy a cheapy and put a tenant in it. Helps pay the mortgage and the whole tax system is there to support you.
Good luck

dandandan's picture
dandandan's picture
dandandan commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:04pm

Either perfect satire or a perfect example of how broken the system is.

peelsy's picture
peelsy's picture
peelsy commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 10:12pm

You’d like to change a tax system would that allows business and individuals to deduct a loss against business income (rent)
Good luck with that

dandandan's picture
dandandan's picture
dandandan commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 10:29pm

No. I'd like housing not be used as a wealth creation tool, and that the housing policy settings of government be such that they ensure every single person has secure and affordable homes, not that investors and speculators are able to make money in housing.

Being a landlord is not a job, and renting out a home is not a business.

peelsy's picture
peelsy's picture
peelsy commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 10:44pm

Sounds like youthful idealism.
I’d like everyone to be an atheist but little chance of that I’m afraid.
In Aus the house is worshipped, the view, the kitchen, the shitter. It’s loved. And most people want one where everyone else wants one. We’re seeing equilibrium supply:demand. It happens in a capitalist society

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Friday, 15 Jan 2021 at 2:59pm

Peelsy, it's only really been "youthful idealism" for the past 20 years.

The problem is, the change in government policy has been before our eyes.

peelsy's picture
peelsy's picture
peelsy commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 10:30pm

You’d like to change a tax system that allows business and individuals to deduct a loss against business income (rent) and has done since the early 20th century.
Good luck with that. Don’t fight it, get on board, or perhaps a country such as North Korea is more suited, although I hear the surf is shit

Fooman's picture
Fooman's picture
Fooman commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 5:04pm

This year the QLD State Govt is expected to introduce law reform relating to rental tenancy! HOORAY!!
Currently individuals & families can be evicted for no reason & have that same property advertised at a higher price, ( sound familiar?).
Meanwhile the families that get evicted contemplate less secure accommodation options .....like sleeping in a car!! The people most affected by greedy landlords & other stand over merchants evicting them are already under enormous life stress such as single parents, unemployed or low income tax payers. Just remember that these people getting shafted are taxpayers & are subsidizing the fat cats.
One of the proposals to be put forward with the QLD Dept of Housing & Public Works is that every eviction should have a just reason for it & that it is enshrined by the law. Kicking people out potentially on to the street so some bugger can make more money out of others misery will not pass muster. This shift in government mind set has come about through public pressure such as writing letters & setting up for a change. Not sure what other state governments have up their sleeve. HELLO but if you are coming from interstate or live here already & interested in buying property , kicking families out of housing so you can increase your peso wealth then forget it. Your time is running out . We the people have had enough of greed & have seen too much of it already.
If you do own rental property & are kind & considerate of your tennants wellbeing then you are a all time LEGEND.
P.S. I have been to North Korea on a study trip & yes they do get quality surf. Goodbye & good luck. Fooman out!!

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 6:19pm

(edit @peelsy) are you trying to suggest the argument to alter and or remove housing from a taxation system that benefits an increasingly smaller proportion of the population at the expense of taxpayers and those excluded from the housing market is comparable to communism?

BTW governments change, improve and introduce new legislation around taxation and laws all the time. sometimes even for the better

But besides all that - I agree with you. chances of it happening are bugger all.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:37pm

Percentage increases are much higher around here. Byron is coming off an already high median and so it’s not really representative of other regional coastal areas.

I’d estimate 40 - 80 percent increases in the town I’m in. Some go for more. Houses which would have been priced at $450K during the March / April bottom would now be asking $630K or thereabouts. Places which I was stunned to see for sale at $800K are now asking for $1.75M.

Crazy times. That’s what you get when your prime minister is actually prime real estate agent I guess.

Holiday accommodation basically booked out until after Easter. Rentals dried up.

Events like this change a town irreversibly. For the better or the worse is a matter of perspective. I’m not a fan of it but that’s life. The only times I’ve seen a town change so rapidly and fundamentally is Pilbara resource towns when a new project is announced and Exmouth after cyclone Vance ruined the joint and brought in a demographic change within a few months.

The situation is exacerbated by the developers who are burleyed up by the smell of greed and profits and who will arrive from all points of the compass to throw fuel on the fire of change. That’s when all the cheaper old places get knocked down or flipped just so a middle man from somewhere else gets to help push the locals out of the equation for a few dollars.

Mcface's picture
Mcface's picture
Mcface commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:39am

Spot on.

The fact that houses have been seen as an investment rather than as means of accommodation for the last 20+ years has lead to the distorted house prices and the massive increase in cost of living despite goods and services remaining relatively unchanged.

I'm probably a little bitter due to my long term plan to save up a deposit and move out your way actually. Understood that makes me part of the problem, nonetheless it's disheartening to see that the plan is more of a pipe dream at the moment, or not without significant compromise.

walter-r-white's picture
walter-r-white's picture
walter-r-white commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 9:36pm

Imagine if we invested in productive capital, rather than flashed up huts that we sell back and forth to each other for more and more...

Don't take me too seriously.

omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:21pm

Exactly blowin.
Were you living in Exmouth before and after Vance?

Not many people are mentioning the airbnb situation. Hard to find a caravan out the back to rent when they are pulling in $100 a night...

dazzler's picture
dazzler's picture
dazzler commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:00am

I heard the Byron mayor on local ABC radio say that Byron has the highest rate of AnB in NSW by postcode with approx 20% of all properties, next highest is Sydney 2000, with about 2%.

It lead to massive reduction in permanent rentals available forcing those people who work in town to move out of town. Most mornings the road into town is backed up to the Farm, I’ve seen it backed up onto the freeway. I read an article on the Guardian recently referring to when the workers of an area ie teachers, nurses, services etc are priced out of town and forced to commute as the Manhattan Effect.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 6:50pm

I've seen it backed up the freeway at least a kilometre, hence traffic lights being installed where the Ewingsdale roundabout currently is.

If Byron just festered by itself that'd be bad enough but The Byron Effect impacts north to Ocean Shores, west to Lismore and south maybe even to Woodburn depending on how you define it.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 6:58pm

The motorway situation is staggering. Every time I drive down that way in the morning it's gridlocked for at least a kay to the north. Pretty dangerous too.

Reckon the traffic lights will do anything?

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:12pm

Dunno Ben, surely with the traffic backed up down Ewingsdale Road into Byron, the lights will be irrelevant at peak times?
There'll be a stationary queue at the lights even when they're green.
I think there are just too many people wanting to get into a small place.

Yeah really dangerous when you're doing 110 and you come around that crest/corner and everything is stopped.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:12pm

Agreed. Lights will manage it a little better but the main issue is the incoming volume. Ewingsdale Rd should be double lane too.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:14pm

But will always come to a dead halt out the front of the police station no matter what.
Double lanes will just get more cars to a standstill quicker :)

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:53pm

For real? They're popping traffic lights there?? May as well chuck a McDonalds on the corner and sign the towns death certificate. What a disaster. And yep, it is/was the air bnb's that started the rot regarding rentals. I noticed a huge change when it was introduced. Problem is so many crew, friends included are benefiting from it, it's a hard one to negotiate from a moral standpoint. Personally, i'd be glad if they were radically reduced....like was mentioned above and below, housing should be about having a roof overhead, not making money out of it.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 8:05pm

Last thing I heard, there was a place in Lennox rented out to a celeb for 25k for the week.
Very concerning precedent.

Re: traffic lights
https://www.echo.net.au/2020/11/traffic-lights-for-ewingsdale-interchange/

Edit: Not surprised that Tom Lane wants to sell some of the land at The Farm to the RMS to widen the road.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 3:26pm

Sorry for the late reply mate.

Yep . Before and after . Blowing in and out.

omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 7:07pm

I was there during the same time, living in a black white and grey van.
You're not the bloke always paddling inside at yabbie creek?

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 7:45pm

Hmmm....not that I recall. We’re you the bloke always sitting out on the shoulder ?

Jokes obviously.

Where’d you used to park your van ? Did you work in town ?

Were you from Albany ?

omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong's picture
omong-kosong commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:32pm

Dunes, gravies, jacobz,
Didn't work much, mostly surfed.
The good ol' days.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:38pm

You’re a straw haired natural footer of slighter build .... ?

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:08pm

Bonus points for Yabbie Creek.

Garryh's picture
Garryh's picture
Garryh commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 9:47am

After reading all of this it seems the complaints are well documented. (In a nutshell desirable areas are experiencing property price increases) Can anyone propose reasonable solutions that would make them happier?

WinterSwells

geek's picture
geek's picture
geek commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:09am

Voting Labor in 2019 would have helped with their negative gearing policy. I think coastal real estate in Aus is too far gone anyway, now its a choice between flooding coastal areas with housing estates/multi story units to bring prices down (like what is happening on the SC) or maintain the areas natural beauty, limit overcrowding and just accept the fact cheap real estate in these areas is a distant memory. Give me option 2 any day.

Halibut's picture
Halibut's picture
Halibut commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:16am

I watched all this happen to Nth Stradbroke Island about 25 years ago.

in the future, everyone will be anonymous for 15 minutes

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 6:54pm

Point Lookout was taking off anyway but in my opinion it took only one particular restaurant to really give things a boost and to get the wealthy going over there regularly.

lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:25am

It's insane.

Anyone have the figures for inner to mid suburban Melbourne and Sydney by comparison?

geek's picture
geek's picture
geek commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:30am

A quick search on realestate.com.au shows plenty of rentals in Torquay, Barwon and OG?

Dx3's picture
Dx3's picture
Dx3 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:23am

Yep really odd, I just counted 34 properties for rent across those 3 suburbs, from price ranges from $300 p/w up to $1,000. Majority around the $400-$600 mark.

0% vacancy rate? Ahhh who is doing this research?!

Shaqdi's picture
Shaqdi's picture
Shaqdi commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 4:11pm

Barwon and OG are part of Geelong city council

RenatoMartinsAUS's picture
RenatoMartinsAUS's picture
RenatoMartinsAUS commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 1:19pm

Reality is I have been experiencing this myself atm where my landlord has asked for her house back saying they can't afford any longer a mortgage and a rental that is more expensive than what I pay so I have to find somewhere to live.

Fact is, you can find around 10 houses available in OG , Barwon heads and some also in Torquay however when the price is under 350 a week there will be hundreds of people applying what makes almost impossible to be accepted I have been reject on 2 under 350a week and I live alone , don't smoke, don't have pets and have a good income. So what about those ones that are less fortuned? I know people here in VIC that could not be accepted for months and the options that are coming available are sometimes ruthless, like one real state had the courage to post a house more like a slum (over 250 a week) with the tittle " Worst house in the best location " seriously? This is what people like me that are living here for over 5 years are now left with ? Just because rich people can afford to buy investment houses and have them for their own control and rise the rental to something not affordable.

Reality is money and power are taking over humanity and compassion for a very very long time.

Meanwhile waves are still free around here and there, not everywhere tough.

spookypt's picture
spookypt's picture
spookypt commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 1:56pm

RenatoMOZ - I understand what your saying....but if you think the majority of people who own investment properties are "rich" (while some may very well be) their choice to travel down that path may in turn leave them with far less disposable income per say over a much longer period than you. Its all about choice and the ability to make those choices..
Its a misconception to suggest people who have investment properties are rich. They are simply taking on the risk over a period to hopefully in the end generate some return on their risk. It may or may not be worth the risk. I personally dont sign up to the investment property calling but to each their own.
The money and power taking over humanity deal is as old as the bloke who made Moses's sandles so dont expect any change in that regard.
Up here, as has been suggested...many people are offering 12months rent up front to secure a tenancy. I wish you all the best to find what you need.

RenatoMartinsAUS's picture
RenatoMartinsAUS's picture
RenatoMartinsAUS commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 2:19pm

Thanks spookypt ! Good waves on your way!

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 6:40pm

Renato-
“ Just because rich people can afford to buy investment houses”

This is exactly what I was talking about in my post yesterday. Comments like this are bullshit.
How about you swap the word “rich” for “hard working”?
There we go, sounds better now.

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 8:47pm

Yes goofyfoot, its not all "rich", I'm going to rent my townhouse out in Perth, 2 mins walk to the beach for a tidy sum by all accounts since everyone wants to come to WA. Mind you most people would not want to have lived and worked in Nigeria or some other west african shit hole in able to buy it in the first place.

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 10:02pm

Mind you I will say 25/30 years ago it was very doable with sacrifices to get yourself something really nice but now I dont think even if you did, it would be. How Aussie land has changed in that time and not for the better

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 10:55pm

The Government has your back mate .

https://www.news.com.au/finance/real-estate/buying/australia-will-pay-fo...

(edit - not a critique on your effort and accomplishment- just a factoid on incentives in your favour- all the best)

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 11:14pm

Bonza, I am totally against that, its so so wrong

Dx3's picture
Dx3's picture
Dx3 commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:16am

Gees I had no idea about those incentives being offered, absolutely fucked.

The article itself seems like a massive advert for the perth property market too.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:42am

Seems like a massive advert cause that’s exactly what it is. News .com doesn’t give a rat’s about distortion of domestic house prices by foreign money it’s just agitprop to drive FOMO.

Love this line especially:

“Local property industry experts agree that Perth, which is coming out of a five-year downturn, is on the cusp of an explosive growth period and that “people are going to make a lot of money” in the next two or three years.“

Dx3's picture
Dx3's picture
Dx3 commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:55am

Yep, that exact line was the one that made me say 'get fucked' out loud.

Craig's picture
Craig's picture
Craig commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 9:02am

Yuck!

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 4:51pm

Dx3, I had no idea about those incentives being offered to overseas buyers, I read the west every day and can't remember reading that, they must have slipped it "quietly through". Fucked

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 7:11pm

Chinese property portal Juwai IQI, sounds like an offshoot of the CCP cause that's exactly what it is. Any mainland Chinese who come to Australia whether it be as a citizen, PR, student or overseas buyer have one loyalty only. Whether they like it or not.

Ed Sloane's picture
Ed Sloane's picture
Ed Sloane commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:39am

"relaxed nature of the region will be lost forever " - that ship has already sailed IMO.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:49am

...and will rapidly worsen when immigration returns to it's pre-covid levels.

T.Edds's picture
T.Edds's picture
T.Edds commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:55am

The housing situation in our country is absolutely shameful.

It is a odd situation when the median weekly household income of an area is $870 yet the median house price is over $600,000.

With a lack of opportunity and diversity in housing options communities suffer. People working in education, health and hospitality are denied the opportunity to live in the community in which they work.

Somewhere along the way we forgot that a house is a place to live not just a vehicle for investment.

It will be interesting to note that if the current demand in rental accommodation will be affected with the ceasing of job keeper/seeker in March.

Halibut's picture
Halibut's picture
Halibut commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:05am

I wish all the seachangers with their eye-watering mortgages the very best of luck. I figured out a few years ago that it's much better for me to live closer to work and drive 45 minutes to get to the surf on my days off. I don't need to hang around some overpriced, overrun and overrated beach town when I'm not surfing. So what if I have to get up a bit earlier on my days off?

in the future, everyone will be anonymous for 15 minutes

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:14am

Low interest rates = high housing demand = high prices, hardly surprising 'news'. When i/r's go up we'll see prices fall. Claiming this is the PM's fault is absurd.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:16am

"I wish all the seachangers with their eye-watering mortgages the very best of luck. "

not for most boomers.

sell high a property with 100% equity (mortgage paid off) and buy outright in the regions with cash to spare.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 6:08pm

Not quite free ride,
im no boomer but here is how it might go down,
Yes they sell, cash out . mortgage might be gone and they may have to buy in at an inflated price,
Property taxes < rates and cost of living chews them down .
fixed income with inflation drives a lot of retiries out of existing homes.......

In the end they can't get up the steps either. Hamster wheel my friend,
property next to the coast is over priced and over rated anyways.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:18am

@ D-Rex - you don't see a connection between the Gov's stimulus and RBA money printing going on with the suppression of interest rates and propping up ( booming ) of real estate in what was supposed to be a depression / recession in 2020?

cd's picture
cd's picture
cd commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:08am

There has been a shift in business structures also opportunities, many for professionals. Alot of peoples incomes have not changed -some have increased. For example since covid there has been a boom in many small coastal towns- local tourism. Some small business are doing the best ever. So throw in the ultra low interest rates, these people have money to invest somewhere- no use putting in the bank.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:09am

exactly right. Saving is for mugs. And the only thing worth investing in is houses. Because the government won’t let that investment fail. That’s clear now. Forget what they taught you. Over-extend. take your budget and double it.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:10pm

Equity mate.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:16pm

stop making sense.

Schreinermeister's picture
Schreinermeister's picture
Schreinermeister commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:25am

The “locals lament” has never held much water with me. If you have been lucky enough to spend some of your formative years in a place of beauty and community then consider yourself blessed. If you then have to share it with the next generation of people from down the road, well then you’re now walking the very well trodden path of human migration. 


However, the wealth accompanying this migration is a very real thing to be lamented. The white shoe brigade will bring very little beauty or community to the towns they now populate. They won’t work in the town, they’ll support businesses peddling a regrettable echelon of goods and services, and their entitlement and ignorance will rival that of any long term local.

It’s a great shame what is happening to these communities, but the money always seems to win. Those houses were sold to those richer now community members by previous long term locals, who in turn probably moved somewhere more quiet to live in financial freedom.

It’s a testament to the community of Byron, for instance, that it withheld the Club Med’s and movie industry for as long as it did. But it appears that eventually everything and everyone has a price.

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stanfrance commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 9:11pm

Great comment. Interesting to note down around Victor Harbor though is that many of the migrants are young families who can now work remotely. They are the next generation helping invest in the area. I am in that boat though and am mixing with others in my situation so that may introduce some bias. Its just a matter of how it all turns out I guess.

Stan France

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Schreinermeister commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 8:02am

Thanks mate. I suspect (hope) the demographic shift down there, although likely accelerated by Covid, is a little more subdued and humble than what's going on on the nth coast of NSW.

It's a very interesting observation of modern Australian's attitude towards their home towns. Localism has been dying a slow death, having been sold by its staunchest practitioners to the highest bidder. Then the neighbours blame the transplant.

The solution is simple. Everyone stop selling and renting your houses for top dollar to rich people and then leaving the community. Vet your renters and be reasonable, and even charitable, if you can afford it. And if you really want to put you money where your mouth is, then bank only a reasonable amount (as opposed to an obscene amount) of capital gain from your property and sell to someone who you believe will be good for the neighbourhood.

Who's gonna go first?

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ringmaster commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:32am

The "Surfcoast' (Torquay/Juc) is beyond a joke now. If I didn't already live here there's no way I'd want to move here in 2020 for the 'surfing' lifestyle. The joint is bursting at the seams and the demographic has noticeably changed (for the worse) over the last 10 years or so. Think entitled Range Rover driving mums in activewear, reasonably wealthy suits, new tradesmen from god knows where with SUPS/longboards bolted to the roof and their obnoxious offspring. Most living in Nth Torquay in ugly, way oversized homes taking up 90% of the block or the really rich ones buying in old Torquay and carving up those big 1/2 acre blocks into unit developments. Then after becoming 'locals' after a couple of years they start demanding the 'lifestyle' perks they were accustomed to in Melbourne like a train station or cinema or Olympic size indoor pool because the 25 minute drive to Waurn Ponds is too far.

Anytime there's a remote whiff of offshore wind and swell between 1 - 5ft everywhere is packed now. Even if it's onshore you'll still find Winkipop car park semi full with plenty of heads bobbing around in dogshit waves cause, ya know, "I surfed Winki today" sounds really cool. A trip into the centre of Torquay just to do a supermarket run is a major mission most of the time and not just at this time of the year........just fucken heads everywhere.

My joint (purchased for fuck all around 25 years ago) is about 150 metres from the high tide line and when the ducks line up I'll sell it for a way over the top price and move inland. Just about done with surfing now after 40 years anyhow due to the sheer amount of people in the water pretty well everywhere you go.

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geek commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:54am

Yeh it’s a real shame what’s happened on the west coast, glad I chose the MP ~10 years ago. A lot of blocks are being carved into 3-4 units but green wedge laws have prevented any new land being released for housing estates. Really has saved the region as the spine of the MP would be really attractive to developers being so flat and close to 3 coastlines

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san Guine commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:00am

Hey Ringmaster,
I hear your pain, on the MP, where I've lived for 20 years (in another 30 years I might achieve local status-haha), there has always been the entitled 'set'. But we are fortunate because most of our best waves are bank dependent and if you know the spot, you know and keep your mouth shut!
The Surf Coast reefs have far better quality in season and consequently people want that...but there are still good uncrowded waves, with liveable towns nearby in Vicco.
Just keep surfing bro'

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Dx3 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:42am

Yep there'd need to be more than just the surfing lifestyle making you want to move to the SC now, but for those that are moving down, even though it's not what it once was, I'm sure that in their minds it's still better for them than the suburbs of Melbourne where you are in a traffic jam anytime you get behind the wheel.

We know surfing popularity exploded in 2020 as everything else was cancelled. Office work cancelled, community sport cancelled, holidays anywhere cancelled etc. Little else to do so the surf take-up exploded. Eventually (and it'll likely be beyond this year), enough things will come back that keep more people out of the water than in, so that'll hopefully help.

I guess the thing with property prices is, you sell you house for a massive profit, great. But you still gotta find somewhere to live so unless you're downgrading where you live which for many folk is hard to do, that money you made in profit will just be poured into a new over-priced place.

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batfink commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 5:32pm

Definitely agree that surfing, and ocean swimming, have found renewed popularity with Covid and lockdowns. So many people at the local are clearly beginners or very new. Two reasonable beach and surfing days earlier this week, couldn’t believe how many were out there.

The profit thing is such a falsehood, you’re not richer, your house just went up in value. No good unless you’re planning on living in your Ute.

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vicbloke commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:58am

here here. Torquay lost is soul a long time ago. Started to drift over to BH and it is worse than ever. Was down there this morning, howling onshore and guys prancing around in the car parks and getting amped like they they have discovered the Ments

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simba commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 4:30pm

yep Ringy you nailed that cause i feel exactly the same, different coast though.......surfings not what it was ...well not around here anyway.

simba

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Surfalot67 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:38pm

I feel your pain mate, as someone who grew up surfing in Torquay on the early 70's, but seriously as a Southern Goldie local for 20 years now no matter how bad you think the SC has become its a fuckin long way short of the Superbank! Suck it up buddy, 20-30 people is not a crowd lol.

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peabo commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:38pm

45 mins down the Great Ocean Road and it's not hard at all to get uncrowded waves most of the year. Sure, it may not be as good or consistent, but i'll take uncrowded over perfect any day.

I stay in a certain town down that way a few times a year and I can't tell you the amount of times in recent years that I have opted not to surf decent waves because I don't like surfing alone.

People from Melbourne may be increasingly moving away from the city, but they're reluctant to get too far from it. 2 hours seems to be the comfort limit.

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scott.kempton commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 6:49am

Gee the place has changed shitloads over the past few decades , a mate sold his place on Ocean Blvd before Xmas and got out down to Winch

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Numbatt commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:56am

Nothing available in the South West. We currently rent out our caravan up the back of the block not only to help them but help us survive.
Unfortunately we are not prepared, the water ran out for all of us, they have no toilet or shower atm and I can’t afford to build in one go with all money being directed into our investments and cost of living.
Yes we are reliant on jobseeker and I know that Centrelink, like any other corporation, relies on growth so they will be holding onto the current surge as justification for expansion and more funding.
Living on $300 a week is rough with young family but it’s better than nothing and you quickly learn to live within your means, had my first surf in a month the other day woo!
I have been working day and night on starting a surf store... although no big brand will come near a ground based startup with no financial backing. Are these brands really a reflection of core surfing anyway.. run by real surfers? We will try to support local manufacturers other smaller suppliers if the Corporations of the surf industry cold shouldering. No profit yet three months in, outlayed my super and all savings into the project. Have been halted by legalities yet Big Barrel Surf Store is opening Feb and will grow sustainably.

I bet most of the grumpy buttmungellahs on here will never be able to relate. In Margs most of the donkeys hogging the peak seem richly spoilt... money has come in. My mates dad bought a block in G Town overlooking the best wave for $8000 back in the day... maybe relative but he was still able to do it and he was never a opulent man. Now worth 3mil? Our block will never surpass 300k value and never sell due to its fire risk and distance from good waves.
Such is life, what an adventure of struggles and triumphs!

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:33pm

Good on you mate, respect for how you are handling your situation. All the best.

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joesydney commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:02pm

Those donkeys hogging the peak are probably going to be your best customers as you flog them mid-lengths, over priced wax and MF Foamies for the kids.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:17pm

That's the eternal conundrum of surfing. The sales of the hardware/education/lifestyle access enable local jobs that wouldn't exist otherwise, which allow people to live the dream.

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Craig commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:07pm

Yeah best of luck Numbatt!

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geek commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 2:17pm

Good luck mate. I spent most of my childhood holidays in Augusta and love the place. Surely the town will pickup in the coming years with the overflow from overpriced Margs etc

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bassnake commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:53am

well without giving too much away, relatively uncrowded waves can still be found where the real estate is still very reasonable, rental market has been squeeezed this year but. Just got to put up with the long shitty periods of wet n windy weather where it aint a trendy place to live. Nothing like surfing 6' onshore slop just to get your jollies, pulling into closeouts just for the fun of it all. Get 1 good wave a sessions enough in shitty weather. Prices this year gone up near 10% for all those that have realised what a shithole Melbourne is to live in. Good waves good facilities good friendly locals what could go wrong
except!!!

Bass Strait

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regydogy commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:54am

its very bad on the south coast to , very bad , fuck off you yuppie cunts . just die . greedy fucks own houses every where . its going to bite you back one day .when our towns end up looking like los angles . and crime sky rockets ect . man can not eat money alone .

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KG1977 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:47am

Every state seems the same in the surf regions, no rentals, families in caravans and sheds, overcrowded aggressive surf spots, entitled attitudes. Are wave pools the answer. They can be built anywhere and from what I’ve read everyone gets their waves. I’ve never surfed in one but they look fun

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Dx3 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:53am

Dunno if they are the answer, but fuck are they good fun. I'm off to surf in one this weekend for a couple of hours. Will get at least 25 waves to myself. Hard to complain about that.

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dustys commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 3:22pm

Don't know if they're the answer, but they can definitely take the pressure off crowded reefs / points, particularly when it's only OK conditions. Pools are super fun, not competitive and only cost money if you're interested in using them...

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Sheepdog commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:52am

Look at the great era of Australian pro surfing. Working class kids living by the beach. The Mps, rabbits, Carrolls, Lynchs, even parkos and Fannings. A cheap hand me down board and cut throat crew in the line up. Now the line up is full of millionaire hipsters. Meanwhile, Brazil beaches are the Dbahs and Narrabeens of the 1980s.
There wont be another dominant Australian era while the tough kids are forced into rentals in Logan and Toongabbie

Sheepdog

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hamishbro commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:18pm

Spot on sheepdog

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GONAD_MAN commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:54am

I grew up in Torquay when Ziggy was still there. Was looking to return and retire back to the Surf Coast. With the amount of assholes there are now in the surf and the region is now an extension of Geelong. Am starting to look elsewhere.

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Dx3 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:01pm

Does anyone know where council are at with ceasing further development in Torquay? As in where the boundaries have been set? Surely they'll have to slow it down soon enough. I guess the outcome issue to come from that could be the amount of tradies that may see work in the area dry up...

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Blowin commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:19pm

Two words bloke.

Medium . Density.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:39pm

It's going to be infill to 3 stories in the central part DX3, so the tradies will have a bonanza rebuilding over next 30 years. From memory, reading the planning scheme, Bell St ??iirc) to Zeally Bay Rd? Check the scheme with council if you want to see it.

There were 2 Spring Creek options, but basically the town scheme is the same otherwise.

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Dx3 commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 10:23am

Those 3 storey apartment/townhouse blocks are now fucking everywhere in Melbourne. God they suck. Only thing they are good for are the lucky pricks on a big block who sell up to a developer and make off like bandits.

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pigdog commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:59pm

Melbourne has to go up D×3.
If you transfer New York city over Melbourne the high rises reach bachas march.
Melbourne has only put its toe in the water for development. Covid has /will just put the brakes on for the next 2-5 years

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ringmaster commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:59pm

The local council down here don't want more development. They just can't keep up with the new infrastructure and services required.

It's state gov and big developers that drive it and the cunts are so intertwined these days that some super dodgy stuff gets approved. The local shire haven't got the financial resources to fight it and the greedy fuckers exploit every loophole in the book to get their way.

Lets just see what happens re: Spring Creek valley between Jan Juc and Bellbrae in the near future. If that goes, she's officially all over down here if it isn't already.

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vicbloke commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 3:08pm

they will never cease further development. I have a family member quite high up in a council down that way. most councils need money and development, rates etc is a relative easy way of income

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ringmaster commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 3:42pm

Sorry mate but that's bullshit (in relation to the Surfcoast Shire anyway)

Pretty simplistic to look at rates as 'easy income'. The S.C.S is still currently in debt because in recent times the cost of servicing their rate payers is greater than total rate revenue. I've got access to this information and it's amazing what services and facilities provided that your average punter takes for granted cost to maintain and constantly upgrade. Throw in the state government legislation from about 4 years ago to introduce rate capping and it makes it even harder to keep up. Admittedly, there are areas that have been historically wasteful but nearly all of these have been reeled in now. Plus, these new arrivals constantly want more than what a once small, laid back region can realistically provide or even wanted up until a decade or so ago. As mentioned earlier, they come here, get the '3228' sticker on their BMW SUV then start bleating wherever their voice can be heard about a 'lack of this and lack of that'.

I'td be great if some new 'lifestyle trend' starts in the bigger cities one day so they can all fuck off back there.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 4:15pm

Agree with most there, but surely building brand new council offices a few years back added to that debt? Was it 40+Mn to build?

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ringmaster commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 4:48pm

A lot of state money contributed to that and do you remember the old ones in Grossmans Rd where Torquay College is now? Just a bunch of temporary de-mountable looking offices tacked onto the existing single level building from memory.

No doubt they had to upgrade when they got wind of what the state government had planned for here in the future..........which is NOW.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 5:18pm

Used to walk past those on the school walk in. TBH, having worked on Pilbara and inland mid-west mines, those demountables were pretty lux.

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pigdog commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 11:05pm

It's just mum and dad families taking out mortgages for Torquay ringmaster.....compared to inner Melbourne Torquay is cheap. I think everyone has know idea of what fkn loaded is. It's definitely not a 100k BMW and moving to a suburban surf town for 1million clambs.
Besides the esplanade its just average Joe families period.

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tango commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 3:21pm

There's a process underway at the moment to look at development of part of the Spring Creek valley to the west of the oldest part of town. There are 2 options on the table - Option 1 is the developers' preference and they're advertising all over the place to try and convince people that corporate profits are the best outcome for the community - even on Spotify.

Option 2 is the preferred option of everyone interested in reining in the myopic urban sprawl occurring in the area, including the majority of the informed community groups. Submissions are due in by 22 January and the Greater Torquay Alliance are a good source of information about it.

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Dx3 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:50pm

Yeh mate I read about that proposed development near Spring Creek west of Duffield Rd. As Ringmaster said, that can not fucking be turned into housing in that area. Would be cooked.
You can actually have your say on that proposal right now up until late Jan - see here. Encourage anyone to get on and submit their view, only takes 2 minutes. Just make sure you say you're voting for Option 2. Even if you're not a SC local, do everyone that is a favour and get on and submit Option 2.

https://engage.vic.gov.au/dalsac

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Sprout commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:28pm

It's covers all price ranges too. Some fortunate (read: hard working) friends have to move as the house they are renting is sold and are struggling to find a new place to rent in the $1000+/week range with 50+ applications on every house, crazy times.

To be fair though, struggling in the spots they want to live. Like most, they could go further afield for greater opportunity.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 12:56pm

There probably would have been a time when Cottesloe was a long trip out from Perth and in the boonies, look at it now. That's the way I see Surfcoast, and Torquay/Juc in particular. It's a future Cott or City Beach for the Geelong/Melbourne area.

There's 5 million people in Melbourne and the way they've developed (cram packed) it over the last 15 years has led to it losing its lustre (aka "shithole"). People, with new technology, are going to move. Surfing took off in Corona. Also, regional planning in the last 10 decided Geelong would increase in size by 120,000 people in Armstrong Creek, there's that pressure.

Personally I miss the old Waurn Ponds of ugg boots and people rocking up in their onesies. That was down-to-earth Australia. So was Mandurah in the 1990s. It was refreshing to return here, after being a kid here, at peak Mining Boom #1, going from $75-a-family fish'n'chips in Perth to $26 in Anglesea. Now the cost of living equation has flipped back. But things are expensive everywhere. The artificially low interest rates, combined with abortions like QE, and deliberate distortion of policy like negative gearing and high immigration/ foreign student uni position sales - has created a situation where young people are hampered from an affordable path to set themselves up and raise their children.

There are still some coasts where life is affordable, the catch being you might just have to bring your own employment and the surf won't pump all the time. As for the current Vic situation, yes it has changed but I still see the same local crew who love certain breaks. That's always a nice thing. And I still find it possible to find some solitude. I can only compare it to Perth, and I know which I'd take. In the future, yes I've thought of the move away from the maddening crowd and their BMWs. But I'll try to keep the place because there's a lot of places you can buy out there but not all are located near good natural features like waves of this kind.

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mikehunt207 commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:14pm

Exactly the same (worse even maybe) in Margaret River and other SW coastal towns (Denmark , Dunsborough, Witchy. The last decade saw Margs more than double in size / population (FIFO, WA 'Supertown" status) and now covid has thrown a huge curveball , chuck in crazy government building stimulus for building has resulted in nearly every single empty block in town sold (inc multiple new subdivisions) is going to see it double again in the next 2 years by the looks (plans for Witchcliffe -10km south of Margs is 30,000 people !!!!, all "Eco Style" development ha ha whatever the fuck that means.
Rentals that were $300 a week are now $600+ .
The surf is so crowded all the time, and concurring with Ringmaster above, the all day Prado mum surf crowd , cashed up foilers, sups, filming their horrible little decked out surfkids who will never learn etiquette because their new to surfing parents dont have any either etc etc all been here for 5 minutes but get their "local "number plates on the 200 Series and entitlement rules, then demand for bullshit city stuff they moved away from, a Surf Lifesaving club trying to wedge itself into our tiny safe public beach at Gnarabup (right in the shadow of the soon to be built 5 star resort on the headland here). Traffic jams?? WTF??
New Tradies from everywhere coming in to fill the gaps cause locals are overwhelmed / too busy and once they come they stay, prices go up and quality drops cause longterm local accountability goes out the window.
Less International backpackers than normal but heaps more Aussies doing the van / troopy life thing so carparks and parks are full every night, Caravan parks and accom totally booked out all the time.
Talk about watching the death of a golden goose in fast forward.

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Blowin commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:29pm

30,000 people at Witchy !

That was always one of my favourite spots. Spent a bit of time at Sebbes road . Epic spot when I was there. Haven’t been back for a decade or so now and it had already changed at that stage. Such a shame.

Our old rental at Augusta was epic. Right out of the scene back then thank Christ.

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:24pm

It's nuts! Fond memories of being groms dodging the ranger, camping by streams out that way in the bush, and feeding baked beans to marram in the stream.

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dazzler commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:07am

Spent a couple of summers working in the vineyards down Sebbes Road about 20 years ago. Before the FIFO boom I had to search for people to surf with.

Feel lucky to have had it then.

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seaslug commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 10:11pm

Harmony Forest Dazzler? , owned a beautiful undeveloped land next door for a long time sold it a few years back with a grand return of zero, now if I sold it today it would be different....

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:21pm

Here you go Mike, Prado mum crowd like this?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoUtoqeEw8U

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sypkan commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:55am

haha, that is canggu!

swap wayan for kenny and the marketer's job is done

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lost commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:22pm

You can’t blame someone selling their house for the market price. You can’t really blame some one for renting their house for market price. You chose to stay living in the area or move to the area because of the surf and beach etc etc so you can’t really blame others for making the same choice. If you are a local that owns a house you will have done well if you decide to sell or the house prices make no difference to you if you decide to stay. Renters will always find markets change. You can negotiate longer term leases - 2 or 3 or 5 years but of course that comes with commitment to pay for that long. “Locals” complaining they don’t want others enjoying the same things they have is just as elitist as any group.

knB

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dandandan commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 4:57pm

I absolutely can and do blame people for renting houses at "market price" - nobody at all forces someone to put up the rent but themselves, and they do it in the knowledge that it's making somebody elses' life horrible. Australia loves to pretend to be many things, but when you're on the other end of the stick it's hard to see it as anything other than a greedy, profit-driven, individualistic wankfest of people who care more about money than the welfare of the community around them.

lost's picture
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lost commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 5:16pm

So if government/council was to stop all development in Torquay and surrounds and cap the max houses and max occupants per house to what it is today what do you think would happen ? Rents and Property prices would go through the roof ( even more than they have). I’m no fan of the Mac Estates in Torquay but some have been there for 10 years now and shock horror many locals bought into them and shock horror many more will - the new home lure. And what about those who already live there - are they not locals ?

knB

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Sando1 commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 9:15pm

So true mate.

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hahnsolo commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:15pm

Gotta say I free with the locals comment!! We moved North 4 years ago and never looked back. Funny thing to me is that if you are born somewhere it’s not an achievement but just luck. The parents or grandparents who moved there did all the hard work!! (Historic blow ins.....) Not just city blow ins are soccer parents you should see the locals here teaching their kids entitlement in the surf when they push the kids on the waves your already on!!

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bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 1:54pm

This is not a uniquely surf coastal issue – its regional. This is a problem.
I don’t blame the people. I blame successive governments and their macroeconomic policies that benefit property barons and big business.
Long term lease options (>12mo) don’t exist in any real form in this country. Renters are scum. Australian renters rights unlike Europe have not kept up with home ownership decline.
The “market” is a furphy in property due to government intervention. If the market was allowed to run its course then we would have seen a decline in prices and increase in availability for homes.
Instead we saw the greedy and irresponsible rewarded for their highly risky acquisitions.

monkeyboy's picture
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monkeyboy commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 2:31pm

shees, there's only 20 million of us; surely we can live with each other.

on a long enough timeframe...

bonza's picture
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bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 2:40pm

25,7 million. forecast to be potentially double that within 45 years.

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tango commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 3:38pm

There's so much to this debate and it's been going on for decades. The coastal planners and professionals have been grappling with all this stuff in good faith only to have their lunch cut by the developers and their acolytes. A wealth of info on all these issues is available online for anyone interested - and a good starting point is in the proceedings of state and national coastal conferences.

Torquay is a great example of how not to develop a coastal town. Sadly, the state government, local councillors and town planners sold the joint down the toilet formally in the mid-90s when they decided to save the other iconic towns (Anglesea, Aireys, Fairhaven and Lorne) where the pollies and Melbourne gentry had their holiday homes and throw Torquay and Juc to the wolves - after all, it was only really the Geelong and Ballarat peasantry who had beach houses there.

Apparently people also lived in these towns, too, and they weren't just "resort towns", they had communities and people lived there for the place that it actually was rather than the place it could become. But their opinions didn't matter if they didn't have good lawyers or land holdings.

A key thing this article misses is holiday home ownership. I'm fortunate enough to live close to the beach and we are surrounded by holiday homes which are used on-and-off through the year and, with the very recent exception of a battle-axe next door, are never available for rental. Having lived in three separate places in different parts of Old Torquay over the past 18 years, I'd estimate that at least 30% of the single-dwelling housing stock is never rented out, and it could be much higher. It would be at least 50% where I live now. It's one thing to build speccies and rent them out, but its a national disgrace that people can buy an old place in the best parts of town, knock it over and build a "modest" (45 square?) beach house and lock it up for 10 months of the year.

spencie's picture
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spencie commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 5:45pm

Overpopulation combined with lazy economic policies have led to this. In my lifetime Australia's population has more than tripled, combined with large numbers of "students" from overseas which leads to more demand for housing. We are slowly running out of water in this country courtesy of government policies and demand from an increasing population. Agree with almost all the contributors to this post but have no answers myself to the problem.

easterly

333's picture
333's picture
333 commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 6:47am

It's a bit rough pointing the finger at overseas students. 677,000 in 2019, probably close to zero now. You really think they're buying up property on the surf coast, as the universities charge them 4 times what an Australian student would pay? Mate, they'll be renting the worst place in the worst suburb and share housing.

Surely Australians are the problem. It's Australians who own 2, 3, or more properties. I'm 33 and I could count on two hands the amount of friends my age who've gone all out in the property market and own several properties. I've only just managed to get my first. It's in our conditioning, that houses equals wealth. If you work hard all your life and manage to buy yourself a holiday home, well good on you I guess you've earned it. But I don't know why anyone 'needs' more than 2 properties. We are so lucky and have so much wealth we've got to store it in something, and you're not gonna get a good return in your savings account of 1.5% interest when some property markets are going up between 5 and 10% per year. And it's so common. It's like a big game of monopoly. It's not just money, it's social currency to be a 'property owner.'

We just gout our first home in Newcastle and we almost gave up. There were people offering $100,000 over the guide from Sydney who hadnt even been and seen the property yet. Obviously, it wasn't their first otherwise they'd have been like all the hesitant, excited and freaking groups like us going through the houses like cattle to slaughter.

You can point the finger at overseas immigrants, government policies all you want. It comes back to Australians actually being the greediest most selfish fuckers around, which is why we also can't stand it when someone new blows into our local break. Or makes the line at the cafe longer. Or makes me wait for a beer at the pub. We all want, want, want, myself included. Community be damned. What about me and what I want?

It's already becoming a nation of the have and have nots. It's easy to point the finger, but I think really, all of this comes down to our overly croney capitalistic attitudes, our greed, our going beyond what we need for a happy and fulfilling life and looking for status, power, wealth, all the shit that disappears once you die anyway.

333's picture
333's picture
333 commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 6:53am

https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/hard-to-see-a-safe-corridor-nsw-shel...

These folk aren't responsible for the crazy situation now or before.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 8:44pm

No they are not. international students are just exploiting and/or are being exploited by a policy that benefits property tycoons which in turn (along with the other property incentives) has hampered your ability to purchase let alone at a reasonable price.

The education industry has become an immigration scam. Those who benefit are the builders of apartments, real estate agents, developers, and those who are not interested in studying at all but really just after the permanent residence.

There is a need for an education industry that focuses on a smaller intake, genuine interested in education that benefits society.

batfink's picture
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batfink commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 5:59pm

All of this is true, good comments from everyone. It is a bit of a nightmare.

Looking to root causes, because this is happening everywhere in Oz, it goes back to our very fundamentals. We used to have a genuine economy, a great mix of skills, types, manufacturing, services, small retail etc. For about 30 to 40 years we have been running a Ponzi scheme, largely built on increased migration to drive demand for goods and houses to drive up real estate. Unfortunately a large part of the economy is now in the finance sector, people pushing money around staking a clip along the way, and it’s big money.

Eventually the desirable places get full, and then they get expensive. Couple that with state governments that see themselves as people elected to ensure developers have unhindered profits at the expense of everyone already here and you have what we are seeing now.

FWIW, Sydney used to be a very livable city, in most parts, now most would get out if they could. It’s too expensive, it’s too hard. What happens when the nurses, the ambos, the police and firies can’t afford to live there anymore. It’s crazy policy. And the Reserve Bank now largely sees its role in society as propping up house prices. QE has mostly been used to keep interest rates in the bond market down, it’s crazy mixed up thinking. Consequently all asset prices are through the roof, artificially inflated, and like a good addict the Reserve Bank can’t get off it now. The share market is batshit crazy, it has lost all sense, just pumped up with money that has nowhere else to go.

All so that govts could say that didn’t cause a recession. All because people believe the myth that the LNP are better economic managers etc, etc, etc.

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ringmaster commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 6:33pm

Good post Batfink. Fucken bang on with that summary.

The stock market is an interesting one and a great example of what you were alluding to.

I remember back in late March when COVID first impacted us and the stock market went into temporary freefall. I checked my super balance and sure enough it had dropped about 6,7% in a couple of weeks. I thought 'ah well....nothing I can control so don't bother worrying about it and getting the shits by checking it regularly'. Fast forward to Christmas and I had another look. Gone fucken gangbusters and looking like that graph on the cricket when you're scoring at about 10 an over!

Sure.....good for me but it just shows you where all the money gets funnelled these days. Basically the super wealthy getting wealthier at the other 95% of us's expense.

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Westofthelake commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:22pm

Yep spot on Batfink and ringmaster.

In fact there is so much money out there in the 'market', that people and companies are willing to PAY our government to borrow their money!

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:49pm

Yep we are all seeing things much the same way.

All Ords has been a bit more stochastic than the SP500 since 2008 (the latter has gone up in almost a 30 degree incline and correlates extremely highly with US QE) - but we Aussies are in crazy-town monetary policy land now...

No one born after 1985 would have any real memory of a recession, especially as an adult. I guess there is that, for all the money printed. But the flip side of this is ugly, and is the current situation for them. Covid-recession as maybe the first instance? But as we see in the regions, it's anything but a recession.

Recessions aren't that bad (here, my words might come back to sting me, ha). A quick recession is one without intervention, such as the US one in 1921. As in that case, very quick rebounds occur as bad investments are written off and bad debt cleared. But that approach is just so far from today's policy, and we've gone so deep, that if it were tried the entire thing might just blow up.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 6:06pm

Good thread, interesting reading all the comments. The MP property prices have gone nuts.
We could sell our place now and have about 1.2 million bucks left over once the mortgage was paid off but we love living where we do and to buy back in here is so fricken expensive. Hardly seems worth it imo.

sypkan's picture
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sypkan commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:45am

I can think of a few places that would seem more than worth it with those kind of leftovers...

but home is home

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dandandan commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 7:52pm

It's been one of the biggest downers for me the last five years as the part of the world I'm in has exploded in popularity. We've had the kind of rental crisis Byron is currently facing as the norm down here for about 3 years. I still consider myself lucky, though I've been technically homeless for a few months over that time and have moved 4 times in two years as people buy and sell or convert to AirBnB, and currently in a house where almost 70% of my Covid affected income goes to rent - to a person who owns 3 houses outright and uses her neighbors to spy on how I live. That housing has been financialized to this degree and it's seen more as a wealth creation tool than a basic human right just makes it a whole lot of life feel pointless. There's already a huge divide in Australia whether we want to admit it or not, but the next generation will be completely defined by who inherits property portfolios versus who is instead doing a bond clean when their parents die.

(Currently attitude towards Australia's housing situation not helped by reading a book called Just Money this week - grim, but recommended).

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:32pm

DDD I read this yesterday and it's one of the most profound posts of the thread. I hope you can find a way to overcome these challenges. I know and love the area you are talking about. I enjoyed my time working there and staying by caravan park in the 2000s.

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dandandan commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:44pm

Thanks VJ - it's not ideal, but as is often the case, any time I get in the sea or out in the forests washes it all away. It's shocking how quick it comes upon places you would never expect it to, and how in an instant they change forever. People change too, the entire culture of a place, which I've found really isolating, as if the place you thought you belonged has rejected in you in a way.

There's a genuine panic rising in many of the folk I know as they strive to get an investment property or "secure" a newly subdivided bit of bush on the coast - beautiful places and wildlife habitat cleared away for kit homes to flog on AirBnB. On the other side of the coin, I could name a dozen odd people - smart, educated, experienced, intelligent people - who have contingency plans to end up in their cars pretty soon. Partly because they will need to do it to keep their head above water, but also because preparing themselves for that allows them to feel the slightest bit of agency and control over their life in a country that has lost its mind.

D-Rex's picture
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D-Rex commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:04pm

Blaming the LNP federal govt for people buying into surf towns is BS. What would work to bring property prices down (everywhere) is to let the economy crash (and then unemployment and bankruptcies would go through the roof and the govt gets kicked-out by said unemployed and bankrupt) - who wants to see that? Easy to complain from the sidelines.

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velocityjohnno commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:15pm

Both sides have propped it hard.

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dandandan commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:21pm

The problem isn't that people are moving into surf towns, it's that housing is used as an investment tool to create wealth. Real estate is practically a national sport, and that's not a natural thing nor is it a good thing. The whole thing is a structural issue facilitated by a series of policy settings that favor the already wealthy at the expense of, well everyone else.

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bonza commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 8:34pm

Reckon I’ve read only one party partisan comment on here D-rex. If you can’t see the link between polices that are propping up the property industry, the growing chasm between rich and poor, how this is going to affect generations to come (even more than it is now) and what history tells us happens to society when the majority of have not’s finally rise up and start looking to someone to blame then you are not paying attention.

The economy has crashed.. except of course if you are a home owner.

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Solitude commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:15pm

The Tweed Coast is a notable omission on the above table. It would rank third behind Byron and Torquay for median house price (add Lennox, East Ballina, Bruns). Same old story as everywhere else:
Sydney / Melbourne / Bris snapping up everything site unseen. Local families, back bones of our communities saving their arses off to remain in the place they love. Values, culture and good will they have helped cultivate, create and maintain. Only to have the goal posts moved time and time again.

Local real estate agents tell me that the rare rental that becomes available has 40-50 applicant and the successful ones are those offering $100-$200 more than asking / week and paying 12 months in advance (yep from the cities).

Many of us surfers moved from somewhere, I’ve no issue with that. My main issue is the erosion of community values that I have witnessed over time. People moving from places where people do not give a fuck about each other and the space / environment in which they inhabit. Sadly the people who do are kind of on a hiding to nothing.

There is nothing to blame other than greed and money.

Why have 5 bedrooms when 3 would be plenty? Why have 2 houses when most have none?

PS - is everyone in a similar town a builder these days?

lucky-al's picture
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lucky-al commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 1:54am

WHY HAVE TWO HOUSES WHEN MOST HAVE NONE?!

Solitude's picture
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Solitude commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 11:41am

Is that confusing? Why do people need an ‘investment’ property. Why do you want to be ‘rich’?

I liked one of the above analogies: ‘it’s like a big game of monopoly’’

lucky-al's picture
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lucky-al commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 7:16pm

sorry for shouting - was feeling appalled and outraged. agree with you completely.

frog's picture
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frog commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 9:17pm

Mid week 4 to 5 ft surf Coast in the 1980s and winki and bells would have a crowd. Boobs was empty - just me. Even surfed bird rock good by myself midweek. Sounds like a hassle now.

Frogg

zenagain's picture
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zenagain commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:09pm

I love Boobs.

1173

Buzz1's picture
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Buzz1 commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 10:28am

Same. Often got Boobs and Steps by myself. It was pretty idyllic back then. But I guess it was never gonna stay that way being so close to Melbourne.

Still, I feel sorry for you Ringmaster. Sounds like a real shitshow now. I’ve been on the Northern Beaches since the 90’s. That gave me a good introduction to crowds. But even here it’s getting worse.

ringmaster's picture
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ringmaster commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 11:43am

Don't feel sorry for me mate. Been surfing around here for 40 years. Up until early 2000's would mostly surf waves like Boobs just on weekends cause Bells/Winki Monday - Friday was generally manageable & quite often pretty quiet in Winter.

Sea change mentality and internet have been the big game changers.

tubeshooter's picture
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tubeshooter commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:02pm

I hope the local town planners have considered how many cafes and boutique shops they will need ..

hamishbro's picture
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hamishbro commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:30pm

Learn to drive for 30 minutes to go for a surf.

D-Rex's picture
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D-Rex commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 10:48pm

Both major parties support negative gearing and first home buyer grants - why? Because, with no manufacturing left because of our high wages, the housing industry is the engine room of the economy. We might not like high housing prices but that's a trade-off for not having a recession. PS I didn't start the party partisan comments bonza .

GuySmiley's picture
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GuySmiley commented Friday, 8 Jan 2021 at 11:14pm

1/2ing CGT
Neg gearing
Allowing SMSFs to borrow to invest in property
Immigration rates doubling

All Howard polices

Check the historical property price graphs and note where price growth exploded and how that corresponds to Howard’s term as PM. It’s all there to see, it’s fact not opinion.

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:35pm

Neg gearing was introduced in '84 or '85 wasn't it? Then removed in later 80's, then reinstalled. It's a very long term structural distortion.

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john.saba commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:03am

Population explosion , the dream of owning your little dream is over unless your well in front of the 8 ball , little towns where people went for a Holliday are now living there from the 70s, sun , surf , solitude . a community of so called ferrels , people forget surfers are the explores of coast and protecters of the land , people with a vision , shapers , glasses , little Robyn working at the local store putting up with your bullshit just because you are a tourist , respect the locals and DONT FUCKEN DROP IN , THATS THE CARDINAL RUEL IN SURFING , DONT DROP IN YOU DOG .

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jacksprat commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 6:15am

Accept the inevitable. The coastal surf town, the one you knew with charming cottages and friends and days to remember are gone. For good. Look at Byron. Look at Torquay. Seal Rocks, Lennox and so on and so on. It's over. Bogans with money and smarmy inner city types move in. Knock down, build monstrosities and bring with them a smug sense of entitlement. And these people are usually the most rabid 'locals'. It's done. Adapt or move on. Life is way too short.

onetimeonly

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Lottolonglong commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:06pm

Agreed js

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larry.lynch commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 8:13am

No one talks about the meth labs in the hills of Byron, with the perimeters being patrolled by criminals wielding machine guns. You don't hear about the drug dealers in Mullumbimby offering teenagers ice for a tenner, or the high rate of kids getting into drugs. You don't hear about the high levels of youth suicide or how the kids complain 'there is nothing to do around byron unless you surf or are a bonghead'. You dont hear news about the recent spike in ross river fever and the swarms of mosquitoes. The media doesnt talk about the real day to day stuff. It is all linen and $7 lattes.

savanova's picture
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savanova commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 10:34am

Just an observation. 95% of the commentators on here have complained about people moving into their towns have also said "it was so much better back when I moved here"or "we moved to ____ to get away from the crowds". Pot calling the kettle black if you ask me.

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hahnsolo commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 11:01pm

Totally agree

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 10:50am

Thats fair comment Savanova.

I guess it's the pace and scale of change and the increase in living costs the current influx is imposing on communities.
Kids are growing up feeling their is no future for them in their own towns because of the rapid increase in the cost of housing.

Thats a very big difference to earlier migrations which didn't impose that cost on local communities.

Baron von Spatula's picture
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Baron von Spatula commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 11:05am

... true, yet there's a fair swathe of ye olde smoke n mirrors at play ...

https://youtu.be/AdIxl7e94_w

Westofthelake's picture
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Westofthelake commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:25pm

Any chance you can give us a summary Bazza? I got less than a min in and started falling asleep.

AndyM's picture
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AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:32pm

Fella predicts shit to fall up to 20% in the next three years.

bonza's picture
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bonza commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:37pm

which is not a problem if you bought 7 years ago because your property had doubled in value.

AndyM's picture
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AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:43pm

Pretty much.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:46pm

is that like the 30% drop that every single economist and real estate expert predicted in March would happen from Covid?

Westofthelake's picture
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Westofthelake commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:53pm

haha yea that's the one. Thanks andy for the summary. Was going to ask for it in 25 words words or less as well.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:56pm

"The sky will fall"

AndyM's picture
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AndyM commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 8:54pm

When I saw that all three of his scenarios predicted prices to go south, even the best case, my mind just kind of drifted away.

bonza's picture
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bonza commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 7:59pm

^ this - freeride

Baron von Spatula's picture
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Baron von Spatula commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:47am

... tis all here ... (written about the GFC, but still true today!)

https://youtu.be/xMlaFD3s-1s

Robwilliams's picture
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Robwilliams commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 11:15am

The Corsica (corse) people have prevented developed infringements on their island of beauty. Thus maintaining a respect and love of environment and cultural significance. It can be done but needs foreword thinking and a desire to preserve. You can't go back once an area is developed. So hence the need for development to sastain maintain the community in which it arises from. Very easy to build concrete boxes that offer little to ongoing beauty of a place. Australia hasn't planned that well for the future. It needs progressive practical educated thinking to get the most out of the harsh and changing environments it provides us. We should be developing areas of land that are of lower quality. Environmental and social benifits must be more readily considered. Wealth will always buy the best spots. But big walls keep you isolated from your neighbour and the world outside. Soul of small communities is why they have charm and attraction. Very easy to remove or destroy. Developing can work if done right. A sea change ain't a sea change if you can't find a park.

Robo's picture
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Robo commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 11:32am

What do you expect if you want to live within 1-2 hours drive from a major city.

Robwilliams's picture
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Robwilliams commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:15pm

Australia only had just over 200 years of white settlement. Its already facing some tough questions. I would expect that 200 years plus is enough to see and learn what has and hasn't been working in regards to a number of issues. Plenty of progress but not many viable long term solutions put in to practice or planning. Same mistakes over and over. Why? Are we ignorant, uneducated or unwilling to approach the future in a way of learning from past progressions be it ours or others. yes mistakes happen but to constantly repeat them makes us all look like we lack for sight or a desire for a better future. What is town planning for? Surely to enhance the towns and communities we live and operate in. If not scrap it, review it or change it. The futures ours for the making or taking it starts with us. Eg. modern man can make a better world or can limit, prevent a healthier progression to the future by ensuring nothing learnt nothing gained thus limiting healthy progress of a country that is young in development. Population etc.

Kayne Ottley's picture
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Kayne Ottley commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 11:54am

We need to build some apartment blocks just for surfers.
They will have stipulations in the contract that people will only live in them, and can not rent them out or short term lease them.
A special board of people will over see the applicants applying for the coastal apartment block that will view their surfing to see whether they are actually surfers and not some posers. Surfers will be defined as people surfing a board of 1, 2 or 3 fins, and must paddle with 2 arms or (1 arm if the other has been damaged).

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:59pm

love the unstated discrimination against finless surfers, and body boarders :)

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san Guine commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:35pm
udo's picture
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udo commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 12:55pm
velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:07pm

Kayne's comment above, yes I couldn't resist, but they have a point.

Looking at seasonal workers in snow towns, or surf towns, the rent is mental, and they provide valuable services (ie, the people enjoying the nature do place value on everything from lift operation to introduction on how to ski/snowboard/surf)

Share houses alleviate this.

In terms of wage, the rent on an individual place is high so that breaking even requires either a good, fixed salary or working tons of hours, or two jobs.

Now a setup of flats for these young people, capped at a low rent, might allow them to work and build savings (It wouldn't become the party block of the suburb at all...)

juegasiempre's picture
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juegasiempre commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:08pm

I've found the golden rule of real estate to be that as it gets more valuable, it becomes a worse place to live. The solution is simple, move somewhere nicer and cheaper.

I live on the GC and it's been cooked since COVID. I used to surf the beachies and I'd paddle out and say G'day to the 2 or 3 people on the bank. It's not hyperbolic to say that now, paddling out at similar conditions, I see a human chain stretching south to Miami and north to the spit.

I'm travelling around Australia on an indefinite surf trip from mid year. I'm already planning on doing the beaches Mon-Fri and then going inland for the weekend/holidays, rince and repeat. So it really sucks to hear that the explosion of surfers isn't just a GC thing but a national phenomenon :(

thermalben's picture
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thermalben commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 1:11pm

So... the Goldy wasn't crowded prior to Covid?

juegasiempre's picture
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juegasiempre commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 3:51pm

It definitely was. It's just that it's much more crowded in the surf since COVID.

Toppa's picture
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Toppa commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 5:43pm

As a surfer and father of three kids under thirty the cost of real estate (ownership & rental) is a real worry. I bought my first house at 26 yrs and it wasn't easy but it was doable. It is so much harder now thanks to greedy developers and investors encouraged by record low interest rates and favourable laws which enable the wealthy to accumulate more properties at the cost to young first home buyers and those on low incomes. Spare me the mum and dad investors as Abbott and Hockey called them with multiple properties! I am very fortunate to own my one and only home. I worry that my kids won't be as fortunate.

Toppa

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 5:49pm

Same here Toppa.

iwwallace's picture
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iwwallace commented Saturday, 9 Jan 2021 at 8:19pm

I grew up on the Far Nth Coast of NSW in the 70's and me and 2 mates could surf places like Arrawarra, Mulloway, Woolgoolga back beach all day uninterrupted. Unfortunately / fortunately life has changed everywhere. Easier access, everyone can get to the beach, better wages, etc etc. Just about everywhere is packed. I now live at Torquay on the SC and love it here. Yes I am one of the ones that has only been here a few years, worked hard most of my life, and now enjoying the fruits. It is very busy here that is true, but go up in the bush to places like Daylesford any weekend and it is the same. Prices here are ridiculous now, but, having said that, I can remember my first house being 90k and thinking, holy shit that is so so much money. It is all relevant. Unfortunately my kids are unlikely to be able to afford a house here, but as a kid, I had to move to get an affordable house.

billythekid's picture
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billythekid commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 8:18am

still plenty of houses in the sc region from torquay to ocean grove around 700k-1mil. with a 5% govt guaranteed deposit, first home buyer grants and stamp duty concessions, for a dual income couple these are considered affordable.
ie: 2 x av salaray/wage = 160k PA gross
mortgage repayments on a 855k loan @2%PA = $37920

Given the couple takes home about 115k:
$115000-37920= $77080 PA after housing payments

that gives them $1482 pw to live off

It used to be affordable to live near the coast and not work much. now its only affordable if you work and earn an average salary

sbsb's picture
sbsb's picture
sbsb commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 2:29pm

Maybe try median earnings at around $58K to give a clearer picture for the “average” person. “Average” or mean salary data is highly skewed for that purpose by the exponential top end.

Sheep go to heaven's picture
Sheep go to heaven's picture
Sheep go to heaven commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 8:47am

2 average salarys = 160k ! I must be in the wrong job , anyway some great posts on this . Our local council has actively discouraged subdivision for many years by setting a minimum size of 80 hectares if you want to carve up the farm .Plenty of people whinge about it but the quality farming land stays as viable farming land and we don't have a Mornington Peninsula situation where all the farms were subdivided into hobby farms , horse studs and picket fence 5 acre gardens .

billythekid's picture
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billythekid commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 9:15am

Yeah its a fair bit, ABS puts av full time earnings closer to 90k!

https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/labour/earnings-and-work-hours/average...

Ralph's picture
Ralph's picture
Ralph commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 9:29am

No capital gains tax or land tax on the family home distorts the market quite a bit I reckon.

Disclosure: I am not a property investor.

Imo negative gearing is an overrated investment strategy unless you plan to ultimately move into the property and make it your principal residence or otherwise never sell it (but then I think ATO will take its share when you die?).

Its based on making a loss (expenses > income and thereby getting a tax deduction which reduces but does not eliminate the loss) with capital appreciation over time being greater than the accumulated running losses.

Problem is when you sell the investment property you crystallise a capital gains tax liability.

Also the investor has all the hassles of dealing with tenants and maintaining the property.

I guess the way property prices have gone many investors would still be ahead even after paying the CGT.

Property investors are sitting ducks to be hit with property tax increases (land tax, CGT rate increase) if the state and federal governments ever decide that they want to pay back the debt racked up during covid.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 9:46am

which is exactly why it will never happen. NSW has already moved in a direction that favours flipping houses with the stamp duty changes / proposals.

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:15am

Just one night of Air BnB rental / holiday let on your place of residence puts you into capital gains territory
is that correct Ralph ?

Ralph's picture
Ralph's picture
Ralph commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 12:29pm

I'm not a tax expert but I think that one night of Air BnB rental / holiday let on your place of residence could have CGT implications.

dazzler's picture
dazzler's picture
dazzler commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 3:17pm

Yes however it will be pro-data ie if AnB for 1/2 the year CGT will apply to 1/2 the Capital Gain made in that year,

Rented for 1 week, CGT will apply to 7/365ths of the Capital gain.

Lanky Dean's picture
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Lanky Dean commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 6:51pm

I would just like to point out , that as a former Victorian resident . The "surf coast shire" is probably the worst coast to live on in Vic........
months of flat spells, poor winds, and onshore trades for PC meaning you are pretty much stranded wave less and wondering why you didn't move to the other coasts that get more consistent swell patterns . Surfing bells and winki aka whistles only needs to be done once.......

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 6:59pm

whats the best coast in Vic?

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 7:39pm

Purely from a surfers viewpoint I'd say it depends what waves you want to surf.
West of Cape Otway if you're into the big stuff
Surf Coast for long, groomed winter swells
Phillip Island for variety
MP for occasional glimpses of quality, mostly pus.
Gippsland coast for small closeout beachies.

Finnbob the terror's picture
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Finnbob the terror commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 6:53am

hey goof,
don't under estimate the 90 miles of pumping potential, had some pumping waves with no one out along that stretch, just me and the whites.

Weatherman's picture
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Weatherman commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 12:31pm

Not a bad summary goofy, I'm on the SC and pretty happy to be here. Sure the crowds are getting worse and Torquay area is impossible at times, but there are lots of options in various conditions. Hopefully last year was an aberration, not the new normal for crowds etc. I don't want to end up a bitter old guy cursing what the coast has become. Three of my best surfs last year had less than 10 people out for most of the sessions. Quality waves, but down the road from Bells area. There are still good waves out there. Are there better coasts? I don't know, most have there positives and negatives.

mark

Stok's picture
Stok's picture
Stok commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 10:30pm

Surfcoast has the best waves for sure. It's just overcrowded though for what it delivers. It's definitely the reverse Bukit!

Vic coastlines are like the old interconnected taps analogy....if one's turned on the other is off. Usually based on summer and winter as you'd expect.

Pretty rare they're both pumping, and if they are, one will be way better than the other (i.e. on such days, you'll get packed glassy 3-4ft Winki, but empty alltime standup 6ft+ tubes at 'spot xyz' on the other coast).

pigdog's picture
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pigdog commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 11:14pm

Freeride its Melbourne.....drive to Tullamarine get tubed for $6.50 per wave.

Lanky Dean's picture
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Lanky Dean commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:59am

I don't think i should put that on here.

Blowin's picture
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Blowin commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 7:27am

The one in your rear view mirror

san Guine's picture
san Guine's picture
san Guine commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 7:48am

Thanks Blowin,
At least one less punter in the line-up.

Blowin's picture
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Blowin commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 7:59am

Doing my bit to lift Vicco out of the gutter

D-Rex's picture
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D-Rex commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 7:22pm

West coast of Port Phillip would be my choice - cheap(ish) housing and no crowds - awesome on a SE wind.

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Solitude commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 8:43pm

I’m sure no one would bother to mention, but I’d love to hear from those who live on a surfable coastline where the above affliction is not the case.

Where on the coast in Oz has changed the least in the last 20 years?

Blowin's picture
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Blowin commented Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 at 9:58pm

.

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Blowin commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 6:25am

The article doesn’t really mention the multitudes who are now encouraged to sleep in their vehicles in many towns now. Previously van lyfers would get moved on but now it’s like a lot of car parks are mini camp sites. It seems that the rules about free camping were only enforced to ensure the local accommodation providers received as much business as possible and now that the all accomodation is permanently full the towns don’t give a rat’s about crew living in their cars as it just means more money for the town through sheer population numbers.

Living in a car isn’t so bad. It can be pretty damn good actually if the circumstance is a happy one. Doesn’t mean I’m stoked when the car parks around the joint are permanently full as crew just park up and never leave particularly when the rubbish starts to accumulate around them.

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:30am

I just cant jump on the all the general blame someone else spew. The whole dialogue generally blames someone else for their problem. Why? Im sure the nurse that lived and bought a house near Brisbane or Sydney CBD to be close to the hospital to work 20 years ago cant replicate the same thing now? Whats the diff.

If you've had 4 kids then cant find a house that'll support them near the beach and pay for all the bits and bobs that go with it and still have $'s left over then maybe A: You've had too many kids or B: your expectation of proximity to said beach requires rethinking or A and B!.

I mean FFS why is everyones individual problem the fault of someone else? The blow ins, the government, the tax laws, the property market! PHUCK!

The thing thing that really gets my goat...and sure all of the issues above could easily afford an essay should I care so much.....but ITS DOG /SHITnPISS. The smell of dog piss and shit at every beach entry point along the Sunny Hoax is just mind boggling! It used to be bad at the spit on the GC being a dog centric piss and shit beach give a phuck to anyone else...but on the SC its mutant SHIT and PISS from any road to the beach. And 2020 was the year of capitulation. Its mutant. COVID = The beach is now a litter tray for all!

Mandate phucking nappies on ya pootches fuckers.... Your so daft your lost to the fact your happy to live in your own dog shit filth and now by ownership you think everyone else wants to too. And that goes for the old fucks that bring their fucking yappers to the coffee shops and then expect those attending to enjoy their brews as you pick up a freshly laid steaming dog shit in a bag under the cafe table.

Nappy ya Fuckn dogs!

PS.... If its your penchant try and buy a V8 HQ 4 door kigswood. 20 years ago $5k.
Now $40k - $50k. I dont have the answers but I sure as hell get the ips when people blame everyone else for the reason their lives arent what they want them to be! FFS

PSS.... my neighbour is a single parent with a part time job who earns more than me in cash money by far. Her latest little spicey income earner is renting a piece of her yard to a bloke with a 20 foot caravan parked up against my front fence paying her $350 a week just for a place to park and live in the fucker. Its amazing how my tax $'s pay her single parent pension so as she can get her lips filled with cows jellow and have a daily run to the BWS. Thats Australia - the lucky country!

Rant over.

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bonza commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:44am
spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 11:04am

Nope....EVERYTHING has grown faster than incomes. The housing market is not exclusive. My last salary increase was Jan 2011. And Im sure Im not Robinson Crusoe unless you work in the public (Govt) sector

Try cars, school fees, food.....this list never ends..

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bonza commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 11:31am

for sure. despite this and no matter how essential health, food, education is, when it comes to priorities shelter is right up there ain't it. doing the household budget what are you going to prioritize payment wise. mortgage comes 1st always.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-07-26/need-v-desire-vert/11351736?nw=0

https://www.aph.gov.au/about_parliament/parliamentary_departments/parlia...

https://theconversation.com/when-houses-earn-more-than-jobs-how-we-lost-...

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 11:39am

Yep dont disagree. In its simplest form even if wages kept up pace with house price growth I cant see the problem being any different unless house prices stalled and wage growth continued. The see-saw effect. More chance of hell freezing over.
I dont have any solutions to the problems. I saw a girl and her bloke and pooch on FB this am wanting to move from Bris to Coolum with their unnappied pooch to a house near the beach for $500. I love the enthusiasm (though delusional at best) of youth!

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gedsta commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:43am

Good point Blowin, a bit off the topic but, "Free Campers" have become a major issue on the Tweed Coast. Local council has tried various attempts to curb this including a recent "no parking" at any coastal car park between the hours of 11pm to 5am. Works well in theory but needs to be policed to be effective and if the recent holiday period is any indication, it has done f-all. As well as disenfranchise those that like to fish in the wee hours or over-night.
I carry a roll of garbo bags in the ute and personally I'm tired of cleaning up after these entitled pricks, it's now become a major public health issue with the amount of litter, food stuff and defecation left behind. Adjoining local government areas appear to have a better hold on this issues than ours....(??)

Gedsta

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spidermonkey commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 10:46am

Nice rant, completely agree dog shit alley up at Sunshine is deplorable, saw a guy the other day carrying his pooch around in one of those chest baby carrier's, man bun and all. Sprayed my beer laughing so hard. He didn't even blink....

Craig's picture
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Craig commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 12:00pm

Kinda depressing reading all the above. I think owning a house close to the coast (even in the suburbs) is well beyond reach, and luckily it doesn't bother me too much, I'd rather use that money living a great, full life and not being shackled by a monster mortgage. That may change in the future but to see all these quiet, off the beaten track locations change so rapidly is sad.

What I saw at one location on the weekend was sickening thanks to the insta/selfie/get a photo at a popular tourist spot, with lemmings descending onto what was once a very very quiet locale. All then to lineup in the dozens to get that shot. Yuck!

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Blowin commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 12:52pm

Don’t give up Craig. Still possible to get a house for $450K within 5 min drive of the beach- you know which beach ! - maybe even a hundred grand less just up the coast a bit .

Still a lot of dosh but doable.

PS I was down your wayish a few months ago and watched the endless streams of Insta hounds marching to their sacred selfie spot for a snap then back to the car. Interesting to see that many of them had dogs with them despite it being in a National park ! Surf was empty and fun though.....

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Craig commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:00pm

That's encouraging to hear.

Stok's picture
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Stok commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:40pm

Try not to get too high and mighty with the kids of today and social media hotspots!

Surfers are no better, if not worse!?

We're the lemmings, lining up and fighting over waves only to do a couple of awkward/bogged turns at a crowded warm water point break! overcrowding towns. Half of us post photos about it after as well!

I'm sure some people at some coastal towns would be saying how nice it was before surfers came....(unless of course they're selling their property at 5-10 x original purchase price, which they probably are).

Craig's picture
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Craig commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:46pm

For sure, hence now I'm more than mindful myself and post images from off the beaten track spots a week or so later, if not months and try and avoid identifying landmarks.

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belly commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 9:18am

But if I'm tracking correctly Craig you live (assume rent) in Manly. Couldn't you work from anywhere (and therefore live and buy) with a decent internet connection?
There are affordable coastal hamlets, why stay in a massive city - I'm guessing other reasons like social, airport access...

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Craig commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 10:58am

Share-house a suburb back from Manly and yes I could but all my friends etc are here and I still want to be close to the mountains so it'd be south rather than north I reckon if I moved.. Thought about it but not at the moment :)

geek's picture
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geek commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 1:22pm

Plenty of places under $500k east of melb within 5-10min of coastline with better and much more consistent waves than Sydney. Arguably better steeps in the Vic mountains too ;-)

belly's picture
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belly commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 1:59pm

Come on geek, I've lived the dream of both Vic and then NSW BC, there's no going back :-) south coast is where it is at :-)

Craig's picture
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Craig commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 1:51pm

Yeah, warmer water, can surf fun waves year round, pumping at times as well with plenty of options a couple of hours either side of Sydney, think I'll stay north ;)

Weatherman's picture
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Weatherman commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 12:49pm

Today's WOTD basically shows why people want a piece of the action on the SC. The good thing is in these conditions lots of other spots would be good too. Not as good as Bells/ Winki of course, but still pretty good. 20/ 30 years ago before the internet, days like this went under people's radar. If you were on the spot you scored.
,

mark

Stok's picture
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Stok commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:33pm

To those who's minds are tuned into surf...it's like constant marketing! Images of pumping surf....who wouldn't want a piece!

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 1:45pm

We've all a slanted viewed potentially as well as most who can afford to live within close proximity to the beach in reality probability dont really "surf". Maybe they add to the flotsam and jetsom and have a board but 4 am dawn patrols or 3/4mm rubber with hoods or surfing during whale season may come a distant second to cafe latte or beach walks.
Once you've lived/owned on the beach and appreciate the insane council rate costs, the constant maintenance required to stop the place rusting away to within an inch of its structural integrity or people parking across your driveway during school holidays you quickly build a vast appreciation for living maybe a few k's away (in distance and $250,000 +/-) where once your selfish endeavor's are satisfied (surfing) you can run back to the serenity of your trench without the constant hustle and bustle of the sound of the place being loved to death!

NDC's picture
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NDC commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 10:07am

spookypt - u just made me feel a lot better bout living a couple of kms from the beach... and I felt pretty good about it already - thanks hahahah

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bonza commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 2:05pm

agree spookypt. whats problematic now is that in this COVID world affordability issues have instantly exploded across the regions. surf or coastal accessibility is not an exclusive factor to price affordability. Victoria is a good example and from what I am seeing so is NSW.
+/- $250k means bugger all when you are comparing it to multi/million dollar properties because the average punter has no chance.
as surfers we understandably are seeing this as a coastal issue but its not. how far are people prepared to travel for a wave and how often? and is that even an option thanks to the COVID tree changers?

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 2:13pm

I knew when I put the +/- $250k it'd be picked up. Its purely for reference $ tbh. Not truly reflective. It could be ten times that! Ive done the math only last year and it'd cost me double to have the relative same (house 3 bed etc) as what I have now but am 5ks from the beach. As many commented on a post I put up last year....Im way better off staying where I am. And have!

ringmaster's picture
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ringmaster commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 6:24pm

Fuck times sure have changed.

The 2nd joint I was renting in Jan Juc some 25,26 years ago had it all. Close to the beach/nice quiet back streets with all permanent residents and just a 7 minute walk to the pub and B.R.C. I liked it so much, one night I rang the owner who lived in Melbourne and asked if he wanted to sell it. A week later he rang back and said "sure" and gave his price which was just over 150k. We agreed and got some local lawyers to do the conveyancing and that was it! Homeowners and we'd even been able to test drive it for a couple of years.

I didn't have much behind me back then cause I'd spent the bulk of my 20's at uni and overseas but buying a house was still possible. You almost couldn't give away a house around here back then!

I'd have to live in Corio if I was in the same situation now.

GONAD_MAN's picture
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GONAD_MAN commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 10:40am

@ ringmaster. I can remember when i was a kid, my Dad and Pop talking about a raffle at a Geelong Pub. The winning prize was a block of land in Jan Juc late 70's.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 6:53pm

There’s been a few comments here, negative ones, about people wanting to own a second house either a holiday home or investment property.
What’s wrong with someone working hard to get somewhere in life, and trying to make sure their kids have a secure (hopefully) future. Because let’s face it once you have kids everything you pretty much do from then on is for them.
I’m hoping to buy a second property in the next few years. It won’t be on the MP, probably not even near the coast. But I’ve set up my own business, taken risks, worked hard and now want to make sure my kids have more growing up than I did. To be honest I can’t see anything wrong with that.

bonza's picture
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bonza commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 8:23pm

Because there is nothing wrong with that goofy. All power to you and your family and what you have achieved.

Robo's picture
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Robo commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 6:58pm

The only people complaining about those that own houses are those that don’t, go figure.

bonza's picture
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bonza commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 8:29pm

yeah sure Robo there's been a few petty heckles but I reckon most of the complaints have had substance. From homeowners - despondent about the rapidly changing nature of their communities, opportunities for their children and rising inequality.

lost's picture
lost's picture
lost commented Monday, 11 Jan 2021 at 11:53pm

I had this theory that most waves self regulate in the end eg it gets to a point where no one in their right mind is going to paddle out because there is already too many people in the water for it to be enjoyable or to even find a wave. Then I went to the super bank and fucked up my theory.

But seriously if you are looking at a crowded break and decide to paddle out, don’t be complaining about the crowd - you are the crowd.

Likewise for somewhere like Torquay - if you want to live there and are complaining about the crowds, don’t. You are part of that crowd. I don’t subscribe to anyone having a right to live somewhere over someone else. As someone has already said if you were born there you just got lucky. It doesn’t give you a right to live there over someone else forever.

knB

NDC's picture
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NDC commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 10:21am

u make the point about entitlement v nicely there lost... "don't complain about the crowd.... you are the crowd" - I love it...

Find myself thinking the same thing about national boundaries and borders - I was LUCKY to be born in Aust.... I did nothing to earn the wealth and lifestyle that's been bestowed upon me as a result... I'm not saying we can open borders without regulation as it would kill the golden goose for everyone - including the new arrivals ... but I'm glad when I look under the ugly political rhetoric about immigration I learn that Australia by world standards and per capita measures has a generous intake of refugees + I hope we can do better at the difficult boundary where people arrive through unofficial channels

I'll defo be recycling the "... you are the crowd" angle next time I hear complaints about crowds - or make those complaints myself hahaha

san Guine's picture
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san Guine commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 7:44am

This may (or may not ) shed some light on relative housing affordability.https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parlia...

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san Guine commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 7:48am

For the record my wife and I have an investment property and I personally don't believe we should get the level of tax benefits we receive. However, there are plenty of other forms of 'middle class welfare' also available.
Overhaul the entire tax system, anyone?

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 2:31pm

This topic takes me back to the stretch of sand on the Oahu North Shore. Ownership, rent, localism, blow ins, house prices ...not dissimilar as a microcosm in many ways...

Blowin's picture
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Blowin commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 3:30pm

This article is about the Australian government’s political decision to turn Australian homes into a speculative market subject to the forces of global finance and the resultant effect on Australian society.

spookypt's picture
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spookypt commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 4:52pm

All stats taken from www.aifs.gov.au

This is the articles info simplified

* In 1981, average weekly earnings for a man working full-time was $311.00
* In 2016, average weekly earnings for a man working full-time was $1575.00
= A 406% increase over 35 years.

Now compare capital city nominal median house prices for same period.
March 1980 March 2016
Sydney $64 800 $999 600 Increase +/- 1440%
Melbourne $40 800 $713 000 Increase +/- 1650%
Brisbane* $34 500 $480 000 Increase +/- 1300%
Adelaide $36 300 $445 000 Etc
Perth $41 500 $520 000 Etc
Canberra $39 700 $570 000 Etc

So in laymans terms wage growth is approx 1/4 of what it needs to be to get the same bang for buck that you did in 1980. Plenty of other factors involved of course but you cant debate the affordability numbers are challenging at best based on the simple stats above.

ringmaster's picture
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ringmaster commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 4:57pm

That's it in a nutshell. Obviously interest rates are at an all time low now but that means jack shit if you have to borrow about 8 - 10 times what you earn in a year just to buy a house where you want to live. The principal will kill you before you even take the interest rate into account.

juegasiempre's picture
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juegasiempre commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 10:17am

This is it.

It's wage growth and globalisation. Since the late 80's wage growth hasn't kept up with productivity (Computers), before that they were coupled together as graphs you can find online will show. Also with no wage growth the 'old economics', as economics is an ever changing fiction, is broken. We can observe this now with the global governments printing money to try and increase inflation but it's not working. Inflation isn't happening and it's because wage growth hasn't moved in 30 years. All it's doing is making the rich richer, the poor poorer. No different than the dot com crash, the GFC and now this COVID recession. The trend is clear and has been going one way for the last 30 years and now we're at 0% interest rates: Nowhere else to go! The only thing that will stop more political unrest in the future is UBI, or a complete overhaul of the financial system.

I don't have a solution, I could argue that it's not even political (even though it's easy to put it at the feet of the LNP and their terrible policies). It's because of globalisation and no wage growth and the problems of unaffordable real estate is not unique to Australia at the moment. It's hard to see where growth is going to come from in the future with shares and property both being overvalued by a big margin. It's a ponzi scheme for sure and I'm not sure how much road is left for the can to be kicked down.

I came to this realisation when I bought my place a few years ago. I have worked since the age of 17, super tight arse, saved or invested all my money and drove a $400 bombadore, "high income" earner for most of the time and the houses in my budget were literally ex housing commission. I thought, in the 80's I could be a literal POS junkie and the government would've given me this house for free with a stipends! Now I have to submit to wage slavery, 12 hours days for a decade for the opportunity to buy this POS residence on a 30 year mortgage.

Not a whinge, just an anecdote. I still feel grateful for being born in Australia as opposed to nearly anywhere else.

Jamyardy's picture
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Jamyardy commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 1:52pm

For the same period, '81 to 2016, CPI has gone up about 390%, that would indicate that wage growth (406%) is increasing at a higher rate than the cost of living (for that period anyway). Housing is probably an outlier, where the cost of housing over the years is not inline with the CPI, its way above, which would mean that some items used to calculate the CPI are increasing at a lower rate than CPI (maybe food, transport, power etc). Like someone said its a ponzi scheme, it needs growth to work, and some is domestic and some is imported, in the end, more housing is needed, and some people prefer country and others city, however both areas are growing in population, maybe faster than the tradies/investors/govt can bring on additional housing. Like all other ponzi schemes, it will fail sooner or later, its just not a sustainable model.

Blingas's picture
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Blingas commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 10:25am

Home ownership is not included in CPI however, rent is! but this article suggests there is nowhere to rent. Also one reason home ownership is so important for a healthy society is that it is the number one way people get equity to start their businesses.

views from the cockpit's picture
views from the cockpit's picture
views from the ... commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 5:53pm

Kids are the problem.
They cost too much.
Ive got 4 x Godchildren all adults now- the oldest 30 with a 4 year old.
Quite ironic considering Im a devout atheist.
I made a decision years ago that if I wanted to lead the life I have/do, kids would have to be omitted.
No regrets from me or the wife. Maybe when Im an old geezer on my death bed but I doubt it. NOTE: I reckon quite a few blokes succumb to their womans desire for kids and then its all over. I advise to ditch the wife and get a life! Yew!

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spookypt commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 6:31pm

VFT argh kids... a definite significant cost factor when it comes to bank assessments of ones ability to repay debt thus affecting how much you can borrow. I was always anti kid too..but I met my soulmate wifey and it was part of our deal to have one.. which we did. And yes they cost a motsa. But there is something my kid brings to me that nothing on this earth can or has and for me personally Im the better man for experiencing it. Mind you...seems these days when you list dependents (i.e 1 child) who would ever factor in they'd be living with you until they were 30! Mine will be turfed at 18!. Then I'll have some $'s again. Maybe.

san Guine's picture
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san Guine commented Tuesday, 12 Jan 2021 at 8:21pm

"well I don't want them" was the answer my then-yet-to-be wife stated on our first date, and we didn't have kids- best decision we ever made!
Not the choice for everyone, but you come into this life with nothing and you exit the same way.
Je ne regrette rien

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Blingas's picture
Blingas commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 9:46pm

well I'm glad my kids will be around when I'm old they will be making a motza looking after all you lot! I fear inflation will be huge over the next couple of generations however as why go to work and pay tax to watch everyone else have a nice home by the beach? It will become like indo a million and a half just to buy a board!!

GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 8:17am

Just reread all the comments here, left feeling like I’d just listened to some early Leonard Cohen albums.

It’s a shit show alright, read the other day of families being booted out of houses they had rented for generations in places like Venice and on the Amalfi Coast to make way for Airbnbs.

Edit: yeah I agree with the person who said houses have ceased being about shelter and all about investment .... official govt policy it seems.

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex commented Wednesday, 13 Jan 2021 at 6:43pm

The Chinese have pushed prices through the roof in many locations. Glen Waverley, Wheelers Hill, Mt Eliza, etc in Vic. Just watched the news and George Colombaris' Toorak mansion 'was sold to a Chinese investor for over $8m'. Watch the housing shows on TV and Chinese buyers outnumber Aussies 3 to 1. A massive house at Flinders is listed at $30m and guess who is likely to buy it? Unless the foreign investment laws are modified the problem won't go away anytime soon.

yeti's picture
yeti's picture
yeti commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 3:05pm

I don't get the argument of the crowded breaks. I live on the Northern Beaches and I still surf by myself most of the times. Just drive XX minutes (for me between 15 and 25 mins usually) to find the break that isn't busy. It might not be all time but it will be better than surfing with 200 other blokes.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Thursday, 14 Jan 2021 at 3:14pm

Whilst I’m stoked and a bit envious that you can still generate a satisfactory surfing life from riding sub par waves I’ll have to disagree. Avoiding crowds is essential to finding enjoyment amongst the waves but a life of generally average waves is a life half lived.

That’s the point being made.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza commented Friday, 15 Jan 2021 at 4:25pm

“It’s a shame for people on a lower wage who probably can’t afford too much.”..... said Ms Witt shortly before exploding with laughter.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Friday, 15 Jan 2021 at 6:02pm

This news just in :

Josh Frydenberg announces dob-in line for Australians who haven’t bought an investment property

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has announced a new national dob-in line for Australians that are suspected of not owning an investment property.

The announcement came hot off the heels of a dob-in line for suspected owners of illegally purchased property by foreign buyers.

The dob-in line, which will be run by the ATO, will be modelled off the success of the COVID dob-in lines and will allow Australians to continue to snitch on their neighbours that are suspected of not being in crippling mortgage debt.

“This is a scourge that’s blighting our great nation. It’s frankly unAustralian and I won’t stand for it,” Frydenberg told The Strayan.

“All I hear from these millennials is that they’re priced out and can’t afford to buy which I frankly think is a cop out. Owning property is every bit as patriotic as joining the military and in my view, far more important to the health of this country.”

Meriton CEO Harry Trigaboff lauded the move and has already expressed interest in advertising one bedroom apartments on the website dob-in page.

*****

RBA and APRA declare economy stronger than ever as they give green light to 500-year mortgages

The Reserve Bank of Australia have declared Australia’s economy is stronger than ever, after an announcement that 500-year mortgages will commence from the end of March.

The initiative will allow Australians to pass on their mortgage to up to 10 future generations for a chance at the Australian dream.

RBA Governor Phil Lowe said the move was part of the national “Build Back Better” strategy.

“Our current strategy of subsidising boomers by saddling millennials with insane amounts of mortgage debt, has proven this model is sustainable forever,” Lowe said.

Lowe also said Japan provided part of the inspiration for the initiative.

“Anything Japan can do, we can do better. They may have lucked out on the Gold Coast in the 90’s but 70-year mortgages are child’s play compared to what we’re about to implement.”

“Japanfication will be replaced by Australianfication. It’s gold, gold, gold for Australia.”

The Council of Financial Regulators is said to be willing to extend the terms considerably in the future, said a person familiar with negotiations who wished to remain anonymous.

“The fall of Carthage is a good benchmark for the repayment timeframe we can manage”, she told The Strayan.

*****

From Macrobusiness.

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM commented Friday, 15 Jan 2021 at 8:54pm

On gentrification.

"We can live up to the value of democracy, or we can treat housing as just a commodity. We can’t do both."

https://aeon.co/essays/how-does-philosophy-explain-whats-wrong-with-gent...

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster commented Friday, 15 Jan 2021 at 9:50pm

That was a great read that asks a lot of really poignant questions. Thanks for posting the link.

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo commented Saturday, 16 Jan 2021 at 6:25am

Plenty of places on the east coast where housing is affordable and no crowds, if you want live within a hours drive to a city suck it up.