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You could live by one of Australia’s best beaches from $400,000 - featured image
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You could live by one of Australia’s best beaches from $400,000

Owning a property on one of Australia’s best beaches is more affordable than you think.

Tourism Australia recently announced its best beaches for 2024, and not a single one comes with a multi-million-dollar price tag like you’d expect.

After all, for a property near Sydney’s Manly Beach you could expect to pay around $4.2 million, or near Coogee Beach houses come with a median price tag of $3.757 million, according to Domain data.

Even houses in Byron Bay or Noosa Heads come with a hefty $2 million price tag.

But to live near many of Tourism Australia’s top beaches, Domain’s data shows you won’t pay more than $1 million.

Aus Best Beach

Australia’s best beaches for 2024

Beach Location Median house price
Squeaky Beach, Victoria Gippsland-South West $690,000
The Farm, NSW (Killalea Beach) Kiama-Shellharbour $932,500
Cockle Creek, Tasmania Huon-Bruny Island $610,000
Madfish Bay, Western Australia Denmark $535,000
Pulu Blanc Madar Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands N/A
Cylinder Beach, Queensland Cleveland-Stradbroke $770,000
Long Beach, South Australia Limestone Coast $400,000
Cow Bay, Queensland Port Douglas-Daintree $762,500
Casuarina Beach, Northern Territory Darwin City $787,500

Source: Tourism Australia

 

Houses near Squeaky Beach in Victoria, which took out the number 1 spot as Australia’s best beach for 2024, have a median price of $690,000 – that’s $3.5 million less than the median price for a house near Manly Beach and $3 million less than the median price for a house near Coogee beach, Domain’s data shows.

In Long Beach, South Australia, buyers can find a property close to this beach idyll for $400,000.

Here’s a roundup of Domain’s favourite properties, either at or near the top 10 best beaches, as named by Tourism Australia.

1. Squeaky Beach, Victoria

Squeeky Beach

Squeaky Beach, a hidden gem in Wilsons Promontory National Park, was crowned the best beach in the nation for 2024.

It stretches 700 metres and is known to have wombats, kangaroos, and emus parading around, sharing the beach with beachgoers.

It’s not possible to live right next to it as it’s in a nature reserve, but its nearest town – Yanakie – is only a half-hour drive away.

Yanakie is located in the Gippsland-South West region, where the median price for a house is $690,000, according to Domain data.

2. The Farm, NSW (Killalea Beach)

Killalea Beach

Second on the list is The Farm, known as one of the best surf beaches in NSW.

The beach is part of the Killalea Regional Park, and two small headlands bookend it, which, like Squeaky Beach, makes buying property in the regional park impossible.

Its closest residential location is Shell Cove, just a four-minute drive to the beachside, which has a median property price of $932,500.

3. Cockle Creek, Tasmania

Cockle Creek

Located in the southernmost drivable point of Australia, Cockle Creek in Tasmania is known for its cold waters – between 12-18 degrees Celsius.

This beach is part of the Southwest National Park, so again, living with water views is impossible.

But just 6km north and the closest suburb to the beach is Recherche, in the region of Huon-Bruny Island, which has a median house price of $610,000.

The catch is that Recherche is a tightly held town that only sees houses coming into the market once a blue moon.

4. Madfish Bay, Western Australia

Madfish Bay

In William Bay National Park, Madfish Bay is a semi-sheltered lagoon, perfect for kids and non-confident swimmers and snorkelling.

The beach is a 20-minute drive from Denmark (the town, not the country), where the median house price is $535,000.

5. Pulu Blanc Madar Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Cocos Keeling

A six-hour flight west of Perth, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands are known for their picture-perfect beauty, and the southernmost island, Pulu Blan Madar, was crowned as one of the best beaches to visit in 2024.

Buying property here is challenging as everything is tightly held – according to Domain data, the last time a property was listed was in 2021, for $510,000.

6. Cylinder Beach, Queensland

Cylinder Beach

Nestled in North Stradbroke Island, Cylinder Beach is considered one of Queensland’s safest beaches due to its relatively small and calm waves.

The beach is part of the small town of Point Lookout, where a house sells for around a couple of million dollars.

Houses can cost as much as $2.4 million, but there are more affordable options, still with sea views, with price tags around $699,000.

7. Long Beach, South Australia

Long Beach

Next is Long Beach in South Australia – a curved beach spanning 12km where you can drive right up to the water’s edge.

The closest town is Robe, just a four-minute drive from the sandy beaches in the Limestone Coast region.

The median price for a house in this area is just $400,000.

8. Cow Bay, Queensland

Cow Bay

Cow Bay Beach is nestled between Daintree River and Cape Tribulation and among the World Heritage Daintree Rainforest in tropical North Queensland.

The area is home to cream sand, blue waters, and also crocodiles.

The beach is part of the town of Cow Bay, where property closer to the beach is tightly held, but it’s possible to find properties a bit further inland for around $580,000 or more.

9. Casuarina Beach, Northern Territory

Casuarina Beach

Last on the list is Casuarina Beach in Darwin which is set among paperbarks, mangroves, and Casuarina trees.

A home in Brinkin would be best for easy access to the beach and there are house and unit options with a vast range of prices and a median of $787 million.

For more affordable options you can find apartments within a 5-minute walk to the beach at around $335 or at the other end of the market you could spend more like $2 million for a large seaside house.

Investors

Investment-grade properties are key

These areas have all been identified as the places with the country’s best beaches, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that any property in these locations would automatically be considered a good investment.

Across the country, there are more than 11 million dwellings and it’s my opinion that only around 4% of the properties on the market at any given time are “investment grade”.

We’ve written plenty of articles and voiced many podcasts over time to share what I consider an investment-grade property is (more here and here if you’d like to explore), so I won’t go into the characteristics of a great investment or the type of properties that fit these criteria.

As you consider your investment journey and the types of assets you’d like to add to your portfolio, I encourage you to consider:

  • What are your long-term investment goals?
  • Why do you want to invest in property as opposed to other investments?
  • How long do you plan to own your investment portfolio?
  • What kind of budget are you working with?

These are all the kinds of questions we encourage our clients to consider when we work together to build their investment portfolio.

Whether you plan to own one investment property or 5 (or more!), the ideal investment strategy for you will be personal, as it’s based on your unique risk profile, income, expenses, and goals.

When you take all of these things into consideration, you can work out your long-term “goal”, and break it down into smaller, more achievable goals that you aim to tick off one year to the next.

Having unclear goals can cost you a small fortune, so getting super clear on what it is you want to achieve is the first step towards building real and lasting wealth in your life.

About Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who help their clients grow, protect and pass on their wealth through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's once again been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and one of Australia's 50 most influential Thought Leaders. His opinions are regularly featured in the media.
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