The property price plunge has opened up a host of bargain suburbs where median prices have sunk way below the half-million-dollar barrier.
And in further good news for buyers, experts say they are being spoiled for choice with almost twice as many properties for sale now as there were at the height of Sydney’s boom.
Property buyers will get the cheapest deals on homes in the Blacktown area, Sydney’s southwest and Central Coast, new analysis showed.
Topping a list of the 20 most affordable suburbs in the Greater Sydney region was Central Coast enclave San Remo, where the median price of houses is more than half the Sydney average — and dropping.
A typical house in the area costs just $422,557, 2.1 per cent below what it was three months ago, and well below the Sydney average of $880,594, according to the Aussie Home Loans and CoreLogic study.
The other suburbs ranked among Sydney’s cheapest for houses were Central Coast pockets Gorokan, Charmhaven and Budgewoi. Median house prices in each of these areas were just below $436,000.
Overall, property sales figures revealed recent home buyers were paying an average of nearly 11 per cent less for properties than they did last year. The price falls were in part the result of restrictive lending policies from banks, which have driven down once-rampant housing demand.
Buyers also have more properties to choose from, with the more than 35,000 properties currently listed for sale well up on the nearly 20,000 that were for sale two years ago when the market was still booming.
Sydney’s cheapest suburbs to buy a unit were concentrated in southwestern regions Campbelltown, Fairfield and Liverpool. There were also cheaper pockets spread across Blacktown and the Central Coast.
Chantelle Stevenson and partner Eric recently bought a property at the new Mulpha estate Mulgoa Rise at Mulgoa.
“We were surprised how easy it was,” Ms Stevenson said. “We knew people had been waiting years for some of these blocks … we felt like we were in a much better position this time as buyers than we were last year.”
Developer Mupha executive general manager Tim Spencer said buyers in the estate were capitalising on the large choice of properties available, which appealed to first home buyers and upsizers.
Suburbs where median unit prices were under $400,000 included Berkley Vale, Carramar, Ambarvale, Leumeah and the Liverpool CBD. The most affordable suburb for apartments within 10km of the CBD was Eastlakes, where the typical unit costs $558,791.
The cheapest suburb was Vineyard in the Hawkesbury region, where the median unit price remains just $190,270. But local real estate agents said many of the Vineyard units available were one-bedroom homes available only to over 55s.
Aussie Home Loans chief executive James Symond said prices were falling in all but one of the suburbs ranked among the top 20 cheapest.
He said both Granville and Lakemba were appealing because of their proximity to jobs hubs such as Parramatta.
Realestate.com.au chief economist Nerida Conisbee said buyers were getting additional benefits from the housing market that went beyond cheaper prices.
“There is more time for buyers to make a decision. This was something was something they didn’t have a few years back,” she said.
GREATER SYDNEY’S CHEAPEST SUBURBS (by median price)
San Remo $422,557
Berekley Vale $313,345
Source: Aussie Home Loans, CoreLogic