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Nearly 13 per cent of first home buyers are considering purchasing interstate

With property prices rising faster than buyers can save, one in eight first home buyers have said they are considering purchasing a home in another state to help them get on the property ladder.

According to Finder’s First Home Buyer Report 2022, which surveyed 1001 first home buyers in Australia, 13 per cent of respondents said they were searching for their home interstate as well as, or in place of, their own state.

South Australians (17 per cent) are the most likely to be searching interstate, followed by those from New South Wales (14 per cent), while just 6 per cent of Western Australians are looking beyond their state’s borders.

Home loans expert at Finder, Richard Whitten, said rising property prices had made home ownership increasingly difficult.

“This is particularly the case in larger capital cities where demand is so high,” Mr Whitten said.

“Buyers who are open to relocating can benefit from lower prices in regional areas or smaller cities.

“I moved from Sydney to Melbourne, partly because of property prices. 

“When you re-examine your property budget in a different market you suddenly have a lot more options.”

Mr Whitten said if homebuyers do choose to move interstate, it’s important to be aware that things like stamp duty and first home buyer concessions can vary.

In addition to moving states, 25 per cent of first home buyers are searching for a property in a different region of their own state due to rising prices.

For those searching in a different region of the same state, Queenslanders (26 per cent) and Victorians (26 per cent) are the most likely to do so, while Western Australians are again most likely to stay put (20 per cent).

Across the eight capital cities, houses have risen by an average of 19 per cent over the past year, and units by 12 per cent, according to Finder.

While housing values across the combined rest-of-state regions increased by 5.1 per cent in the past three months, more than three times than the combined capital cities (1.5 per cent).

At the same time, the combined capital cities population declined for the first time on record, falling by 0.1 per cent, with Melbourne having the largest net loss of 61,000 people in the last 12 months.

The huge outflow from the cities has led to the regional areas having a net gain of 49,000 people.

“This regional price growth reflects heightened demand through 2020-21 as many city-dwellers took on sea and tree changes,” Mr Whitten said.

“We’ll likely soon see a market correction as increased movement from overseas further boosts demand in the cities.”

Mr Whitten said while an increasing number of first home buyers are looking far and wide for a property you don’t need to leave home just to afford a place to live.

“Try looking in a different suburb of your city – often if you look beyond the high-demand suburbs, there are similar but more affordable areas nearby.”

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a senior journalist at Elite Agent specialising in finance and real estate.