6 May 2019

Retirees are flocking to Queensland to take advantage of the State’s relatively affordable housing and warm climate, with developers achieving record sales in the past month thanks to the interstate migration boom.

Over the past four years, Queensland has experienced a 203 per cent increase in the number of people aged more than 50 who've moved to the State from other parts of Australia (known as net interstate migration).

In 2017-18, the Sunshine State gained 6,960 over 50s thanks to net interstate migration (which represents a net cross-border gain of 133 people each week). This compares to a net interstate migration gain of 2,300 over 50s in 2014-15.

NSW is without question the main State to lose pre-retirees and retirees to Queensland.

Between 2014-15 to 2017-18, NSW’s over 50s annual interstate migration loss to other States and Territories increased by 373 per cent from 1,109 to 5,250.

Victoria has had mixed results during the same period. The Garden State lost 460 over 50s to other parts of Australia in 2017-18, but from 2014-15 to 2016-17 welcomed an interstate migration influx.

The trends are clearly shown on the chart below:

What the developers are seeing

Land lease community developer Halcyon told Downsizing.com.au it had, during March and April, secured 30 sales in 30 days across its south-east Queensland communities and attributed the strong result to interstate migration.

“We know sales rates in other sectors of the property market have declined in some instances, but strong migration, a growing ageing population cohort, and our award-winning lifestyle product tailored to a market that has equity is keeping sales strong,” said Halcyon joint managing director Dr Bevan Geissmann.

“The feedback we’ve had from our buyers has been positive with buyers saying that Halcyon’s product is exactly what they need to ‘right-size’.

“They are selling their homes, buying a new of established home at Halcyon and putting left over money into their bank accounts or super funds and just enjoying life. The property boom of the last eight years in Sydney and Melbourne has been a big advantage for us.”

A similar trend was reported to Downsizing.com.au by Hervey Bay-based land lease community Latitude25.

The community’s development manager Ryan Williams said: “A lot of the residents that have moved in, in fact 50 per cent of them, are from NSW and have jumped the border, which is an outstanding trend.”

“We know that usually only a small proportion of people jump State, and only retire in a 100km radius, but the climate is perfect here for people to jump across the border.”

Separately, retirement village developer Retire Australia also reported that it had created new high-quality retirement living options in Queensland, partly in response to rising demand from retirees moving from southern States.

“RetireAustralia is broadening its portfolio in Queensland in response to both the state’s rising demand for quality age-appropriate living options and the growing trend of interstate migration from the southern states,” said Development Manager Judi Hutchison.

“The Sunshine State’s beautiful climate, enviable lifestyle and better value for money in terms of housing when compared with New South Wales and Victoria are all compelling reasons for retirees to consider the move north.

“Our two new vertical retirement villages in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast – Fancutts Retirement Living and The Verge at Burleigh GC – are designed to meet an increasingly urgent need for high quality retirement living options in the south-east Queensland region and have attracted strong buyer inquiries."

Artist's impression of the Fancutt's retirement village

Victorian couple who moved to Queensland

Victorian couple Chris Green and Heather Elsby purchased a home at the Halcyon Greens community at Pimpama (on the Queensland Gold Coast) after several years at a lifestyle community in Truganina, Victoria.

Ms Green said that her and her partner were initially drawn to the idea of a lifestyle community in Melbourne because it was safe, social and had plenty of facilities which didn’t require them to maintain.

“We enjoy living in Melbourne, and I love the cultural aspect of the city, but we don’t spend as much time out and about as we used to, so when Heather asked if I wanted to move to the Gold Coast I thought, ‘why not?’” Ms Green said.

“We knew we wanted a big house on a big block though, because we expect to have grandchildren visiting, and I love my big garden.

“Halcyon was able to cater for that, so we will have a big garden and backyard with two bedrooms, a multipurpose room and a big study. There will be plenty of space for us.”

Our photo below the headline is of the Halcyon Lakeside community.

Find out more

Downsizing.com.au is Australia’s leading retirement living website. Inspect the full range of Queensland-based retirement living properties here.

By Mark Skelsey, News Editor of Downsizing.com.au. Contact Mark at news@downsizing.com.au