Expansion of Sydney has effectively been halted by the State Government not releasing land, plus the geographic barriers of the Hawkesbury River, the ocean, mountains and National Park to the south. By limiting land supply while the population continues to grow, home prices and the cost of living will inevitably increase. The Government now wants to encourage people to move to regional centres.
Over the next 20 years, the metropolitan population of Sydney is forecast to grow by about one million people. This equates roughly to 450,000 new homes being built, which is equal to the size of Adelaide and all its suburbs.
The search for alternatives is on… room to expand is limited and there’s not a lot of new infrastructures, like roads, sewerage, water, power and public transport. And increasingly, we will have no workforce because younger people will not be able to afford to live in Sydney – the housing cost, transport, education.
While the media talks about everybody heading for the coast, this not actually correct. The fastest-growing regional NSW town is actually Maitland. Queanbeyan and Albury are not far behind (Source: ABS 2002-3).
Over 50? Regional New South Wales wants you
Moving to a regional area now makes even greater sense for people who are 50 or over, especially here in NSW. The major benefits are:
Country towns actually want you: They need your skills and want your money. They want you to continue working if you wish. And for every new dollar, you bring into a country town, $7 is generated in local business transactions.
Living costs less: Land and labour are cheaper in a country town, and that makes living easier. From housing to entertainment, to rates and to insurance. And a simpler life means less to spend money on.
Cash to live on: Selling a family home in Sydney will usually free up cash and still allow you to buy a better home in the country while eliminating a mortgage or releasing cash to invest.
Healthier environment: Obviously the air is cleaner, but psychologically it is healthier in a country town as well, as people are less rushed and stressed. Big skies and clear nights compared to city traffic and smog.
Country towns are safer: Crime is significantly lower and the community spirit of watching out for your neighbour provides comfort that does not exist in the city.
You don’t miss out on life: One of the most common criticisms of country life is that you miss the things that cities offer, like the theatre, cafes and shops.
The reality is that statistically very few people go to the theatre or the CBD because of time pressures, traffic, security and no real interest. Most regional towns have very active theatre groups and shops equal to the city.
You won’t regret it…
There are numerous options to consider when retiring on the Mid North Coast and you’re looking for a new home.
And…when the time comes to consider the next stages if necessary of independent living or higher levels of care, the options are also abundant.
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