Living in the inner city affords you more than a just a fantastic lifestyle with easy access to cafes, shops, entertainment and the river.
It could also afford you extra holidays, a better wardrobe, more nights out, and really good concert tickets (instead of the ones in the nose-bleed section).
How? Because living in the inner city can actually save you money — lots of money. And that’s money you can spend on other things.
Depending on what you’re looking for, you can buy an apartment in Perth’s inner city for about the same price as a house and land package in the very outer reaches of Perth’s urban sprawl. There are huge lifestyle advantages to moving into the city, but let’s look at the dollars instead.
As we’ve shown before in a post about your daily commute, experts at the Committee for Perth recently released a report showing a 25 kilometre daily commute from Joondalup to Perth, will cost you up to $22,306 a year. Many new home-and-land package releases, especially the cheaper ones, are even further than 25km from the city.
That’s a lot of time on the freeway each day, thousands of gallons of petrol and a huge amount of wear-and-tear on your car. And that’s $22,306 you could be pumping straight into your mortgage each year.
For some of us, a home in the suburbs is attractive because it comes with space — room for a garden or somewhere for the kids (perhaps in the future) to kick around a footy.
But that’s not really the reality these days. In 2013 the average new block size in Perth fell almost 10 per cent to just 415 square metres. Seventy per cent of the lots sold last year were smaller than 500sqm. Figures released by the Urban Development Institute of WA showed 27 per cent of blocks sold last year were smaller than 320sqm. The average median block size in Kwinana was 200sqm and in Butler it was 215sqm. When you consider the average house size in Australia is 214.6sqm, that makes for a pretty small yard.
Apartment living also saves you gardening costs — from the water usage to paying the lawnmower man. You can still grow vegetables, herbs and plants on a balcony but not incur a lot of expense for the benefit. And, of course, just a stone’s throw away are stunning local parks like Hyde Park, which the local council looks after.
Then there’s the saving you see from being “green” in the inner city — walking, taking public transport, using solar power in your apartment.
Obviously, you can also install solar power and hot water systems into your new home in the outer suburbs, too. Sometimes developers throw solar hot water in for free as an incentive. But often this sort of technology is not considered “standard” so you need to pay extra for a custom build to have it included. Each developer has their own model, so it’s always best to check.
Certainly, at Psaros, sustainability has been incorporated into all our developments since 2013. Our apartments use solar energy and have solar hot water systems, include energy and water efficient devices, and come with energy monitoring so you can see how much electricity you’re using.
This might not be high on everyone’s checklist, but it does have positive and long-lasting environmental, social and financial outcomes for occupants. Ultimately, it leads to lower energy costs.
Inner-city living is finally growing in popularity in Perth, but it isn’t for everyone. In making your decision, you need to weigh up the pros and cons. Living in the inner city will save you on commute costs. But then apartments also come with the cost of ongoing strata management fees, which you don’t need to worry about if you’re on your own land. That said, strata fees cover insurance and maintenance costs you’d have to pay yourself if you settled for a house and land package.
So, ask for advice. Ask friends and family who have made the decision one way or another. Go into the decision with as much information as possible. Don’t rush into anything.
If you want advice on Psaros’ developments, including our green innovations, visit www.psaros.com.auShare on Twitter Share on Facebook