If you’d like a sea change, a tree change or just a change of scenery, why not join the 393,000 Australians who recently moved interstate?1

Property Market

As shown in the graph below2, Queensland is the most coveted destination for interstate migrants and Victoria has also been popular. On the other hand, New South Wales and South Australia have consistently experienced a high level of departures. Western Australia was quite popular but, the property downturn in 2012 means it now has the second highest departure rate. Property prices are highly linked to population growth, so it pays to keep an eye on where people are headed if you’re looking to purchase.

But what will your money buy in these states? Herron Todd White’s July analysis looks at what type of property you can purchase for $500,000 in various parts of Australia.3 So, if you’d like to try your luck in a different location, here’s an overview of what you can get for a cool half a million.



  • CBD: small studio
  • Northern beaches/inner west/North Shore/eastern suburbs: older style 1-bedroom unit; modern studio
  • Ryde/Parramatta: older style 2-bedroom unit; modern 1-bedroom unit
  • Penrith: modern 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit; semi-modern 3-bedroom house on 600 sqm in fair condition
  • Campbelltown: older 3-bedroom house on 700 sqm; modern unit with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms.

Ballina/Byron region

  • Lennox Head: basic 2-bedroom unit near beach
  • Lismore: 4-bedroom house in good condition, possibly with views
  • Ballina: 3-bed townhouse in fair condition; basic 3-bedroom house
  • Byron: basic 1–2 bedroom townhouse.

Coffs Harbour Region

  • Town: older style house, with 3–4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms on 1,000 sqm, close to beach
  • Nearby coastal towns (e.g. Nambucca Heads): House in fair condition with 4–5 bedrooms, near the beach.


  • Town: New house with 4–5 bedrooms on 1,500 sqm; or (out of town) semi-modern, three-bedroom house on 2–6 hectares.



  • CBD: small 1-bedroom unit with car space; 2-bedroom unit
  • Inner southeast (St Kilda areas): modern 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit
  • Outer southeast (Frankston/ Hastings areas): large house and land package
  • East (inner ring e.g. Box Hill area): modern 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit; (middle ring e.g. Croydon area) older style, 2-bedroom townhouse; (outer ring e.g.Lilydale area): 3-bedroom house in poor condition on 820 sqm
  • Inner north (Collingwood area): medium-sized studio or 1-bedroom apartment
  • Outer north (Craigieburn area): semi-modern 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 650 sqm
  • Outer west (Werribee area): older style 3–4 bedroom house on 550 sqm.


  • 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house in good condition on 800 sqm.


  • (town) modern 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house with pool on 950 sqm; or (out of town) small, older style house and farm on 20 hectares.


large, new project home on 700 sqm in well-regarded residential estate; large, older renovated house on 800 sqm close to CBD.



  • East (Hemmant/Wynnum area): basic semi-modern 3-bedroom, 1-bathroom house on 500 sqm; modern 3-bedroom townhouse
  • Inner ring near CBD (Auchenflower/Red Hill area): modern 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit
  • Northwest (Keperra area): dated, post-war 3-bedroom house on 600 sqm
  • Northern beaches (Brighton area): modern 3-bedroom house on 600 sqm
  • North (Geebung area): dated 3–4 bedroom house on 600 sqm; or (Strathpine area): new 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 650 sqm
  • South (Holland Park West/Yeerongpilly area): dated 2-bedroom house on 300 sqm.

Gold Coast/Tweed Heads

  • Northwest (Tambourine area): new 4-bedroom house and land package on one hectare (Coomera area): semi-modern 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 600 sqm
  • Beaches (Southport to Currumbin): modern 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit with views
  • Inner north suburbs (Molendinar area): 3-bedroom house in fair condition on 650 sqm
  • Tweed Heads West: 3-bedroom, 1-bathroom house in fair condition on 700 sqm.


  • 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom semi-modern brick home on 700 sqm; or (out of town e.g. Upper Flagstone): 3-bedroom house in good condition on 7.2 hectares.


  • Northwest (Edge Hill area): 3-bedroom house in fair condition on 500 sqm
  • Inner west (Parramatta Park/Cairns North): semi-modern, 4–5 bedroom house on 500 sqm
  • Northern beaches (Trinity beach area): 3-bedroom house in good condition on 800 sqm away from the beach
  • South (Mount Sheridan area): modern 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 650 sqm.


  • (in town): 4-bedroom house in good condition on 750 sqm; or (out of town) large 5-bedroom traditional homestead on two hectares.



  • Inner west (Mile End/Cowandilla area): newly renovated 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 400 sqm; 4-bedroom 1920s bungalow on 725 sqm
  • Inner east (Maylands area): 3-bedroom townhouse in good condition
  • South (Mitchell Park/Seacombe Gardens area): low-end near-new 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 360 sqm; 1950s weatherboard 3-bedroom house on 800 sqm
  • Far south (Moana area): high-end 3-bedroom house close to beaches
  • Inner north (North Adelaide area): older, renovated 2-bedroom, 1-bathroom unit
  • Far north (Blakeview/Greenwith/Angle Vale area): large, new 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 850 sqm.

Mount Gambier

  • (town): modern 3–4 bedroom, 2-bathroom house on 850 sqm in the suburbs; or (out of town) semi-rural, modern 4-bedroom house on 3,200 sqm; or 47 hectares of rural farm land (near south coast).



  • Inner east (Rivervale area): 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom townhouse in good condition
  • East (Greenmount/Helena Valley area): 3-bedroom house in good condition on 850 sqm
  • Far South (South Yunderup area): 4–5 bedroom house in good condition on 800 sqm
  • Southwest (Munster/Yangebup area): 4-bedroom house in good condition on 600 sqm or semi-rural land of 2,000 sqm
  • North (Edgewater area): 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house in fair condition on 700 sqm
  • Western beaches (Scarborough area): 2–3 bedroom unit; land, 250 sqm.

South West WA

  • Bunbury area: semi-modern 3–4 bedroom house on 500 sqm; modern 3-bedroom townhouse; land only with ocean views
  • Mandurah (town): 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house in good condition on 750 sqm; land, 400 sqm near the beach; 2–3 bedroom unit in good condition by the water.


SOURCES: 1https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Latestproducts/3412.0Main%20Features52017-18?opendocument&tabname=Summary&prodno=3412.0&issue=2017-18&num=&view=, 2https:////www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Latestproducts/3412.0Main%20Features52017-18?opendocument&tabname=Summary&prodno=3412.0&issue=2017-18&num=&view=, 3https://storage.googleapis.com/htw-website-uploads/a7863a16-htw-month-in-review-july-2019_residential.pdf

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DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is correct at the time of publishing and is subject to change. It is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Smartline recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Smartline recommends that you seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.