Half Australia lives here

We know that demographics and population growth drive our property markets.

And when you dig deeper you’ll understand why some of our markets are outperforming.

The 3 areas in blue in the graphic below contain roughly 50% of Australia’s population, which means that the area in white contains the other 50%.

Half Australia live here

Source: Brilliant Maps

Currently we have close to 24,600,000 people in Australian, and estimates suggest that half of them live in these 3 big cities: map sydney location

  1. Sydney: close to 5 million people
  2. Melbourne: approaching 4.5 million people
  3. Brisbane: 2.38 million people

Total: 11,555,416 (49.19%)

And as these are coastal cities with great infrastructure it’s not surprising that property values in our 3 big capitals are high.

How does this compare to other countries?  

Let’s see what the 3 biggest cities look like elsewhere according to to BrilliantMaps:

United States (by metropolitan area):

  1. New York: 20,092,883 (6.3%)
  2. Los Angeles: 13,262,220 (4.2%)
  3. Chicago: 9,554,598 (3.0%)

Total: 42,909,701 (almost 2X Australia) but only 13.5% of the US population.

United Kingdom (by urban areas):

  1. London: 9,787,426 (15.3%)
  2. Manchester: 2,553,379 (4.0%)
  3. Birmingham: 2,440,986 (3.8%)

Total: 14,781,791 but only 23.1% of the UK’s population pendulum market economy world china europe globe trade stock share

Canada (by metropolitan area):

  1. Toronto: 5,583,064 (15.9%)
  2. Montreal: 3,824,221 (10.9%)
  3. Vancouver: 2,313,328 (6.6%)

Total: 11,720,613, just slightly more than Australia’s 3 biggest cities, but still only 33.1% of Canada’s population.

New Zealand (by urban areas):

  1. Auckland: 1,413,700 (31.6%)
  2. Wellington: 393,600 (8.8%)
  3. Christchurch: 375,200 (8.4%)

Total: 2,182,500, smaller than even the smallest city above. And, while Auckland is the city with highest proportion of its country’s people, the 3 biggest combined still only make up 48.8% of New Zealand’s population.

The big difference:

Australia is somewhat unique for having such a high concentration of it’s population located in its 3 biggest cities.

And this is unlikely to change, thereby underpinning property values.


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Kate Forbes


Kate Forbes is a National Director Property Strategy at Metropole. She has 15 years of investment experience in financial markets in two continents, is qualified in multiple disciplines and is also a chartered financial analyst (CFA).
Visit Metropole Melbourne

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