Bridesmaid suburbs: the new brides of real estate

November 13, 2023

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Bridesmaid suburbs are the new brides of real estate.

This is excellent news for those house-hunting for their Prince or Princess Charming home - particularly in a world where cash rate rises and cost-of-living pressures have become the new norm.

But what is a bridesmaid suburb and why are they now being liked so much, just as they are?

And, will the truth universally acknowledged about bride suburbs - that they're solely for those in possession of a good fortune - fall spectacularly to pieces?

Listing Loop takes a look.

What is a bridesmaid suburb?

"Always the bridesmaid, never the bride – until she is," Queensland Property Experts cleverly described the new swing towards such locations earlier this year.

"The bridesmaid suburb is the cheapest in the postcode - the neighbouring suburb that lacks the prestige of its top ticket neighbours but still offers all the key benefits," the agency said.

We couldn't have said it better ourselves.

Similar to rentvesting, bridesmaid suburbs essentially allow buyers to have their wedding cake and eat it too, enjoying an affordable location while still living close to jaw-droppingly expensive ones.

Or, as Ray White Bulimba and East Brisbane, managing principal, Scott Darwon, put it in a recent LinkedIn postbridesmaid suburbs generally extend outward from an extremely popular, tightly held area - otherwise known as the "ripple effect".

"These suburbs are great options for buyers who cannot afford to purchase a property in the more expensive neighbouring suburb but still want to be close to the action," Mr Darwon said.

As well, bridesmaid suburbs can also perform better in the long term than their high-class bride neighbours.

"A well-located bridesmaid suburb can continue to shine long after the honeymoon is over," Brisbane real estate agency Watt Realty said.

"This means the ‘ripple effect’ of price growth could turn into a wave of good fortune for the astute buyer."

Mr Darwon agreed, explaining that as bride suburbs grow and develop, property prices in neighbouring bridesmaid locations could also increase. 

In effect, a bridesmaid suburb can become a bride suburb.

"This could mean a good return on investment for buyers who purchase in the area," Mr Darwon said.

Why are bridesmaid suburbs becoming so popular?

We at Listing Loop never like being negative about the property market

But cash rate rises and cost-of-living pressures have made buying a home harder than ever - and not just for singletons mourning being all by themselves and increasingly left behind in the buyer category.

Couples and families are also finding it a tough world out there with bride suburbs such as Vaucluse in Sydney, Toorak in Melbourne, and Teneriffe in Brisbane, now beyond the reach of most.

Mr Darwon said as interest rates continue to soar and the property market remains uncertain, interest in lesser-known bridesmaid postcodes is growing, largely due to their affordability and investment potential.

"Buyers can still enjoy the same amenities and lifestyle benefits without breaking the bank, even if they're a little further away," he said.

"Buying in a bridesmaid suburb can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars while still being just a stone's throw away from some (pricy) postcodes."

Bridesmaid Suburbs
Enjoy the lifestyle without breaking the bank in a bridesmaid suburb, just a stone's throw away from pricier postcodes.

Buying in a bridesmaid suburb: top tips

  • Comprise on a location, not a home 
  • Buy the best property in the best suburb you can afford

"If you’re trying to buy in a hot spot and prices rise too far, don’t compromise by purchasing a poorly located, low-quality property - compromise on the suburb instead," McGrath Estate Agents' managing director and CEO, John McGrath said

"Look to neighbouring areas, where you will typically find better value, and buy the best quality property you can find."

  • Buy before the ripple effect hits

"In this way, you’re very likely to get a bargain and enjoy considerable capital gains in future," Ray White Drysdale's Emma Smith said.

But how can you do this?

"Find expensive suburbs in high demand then investigate the suburbs surrounding them," Ms Smith said.

If they're considerably cheaper, there's a good chance that these areas will soon be walking down the bridesmaid aisle.

  • Look for gentrification characteristics

"Where the money lies, the new shops and restaurants will follow, as well as new child care centres opening to meet the new demand," The Property Tribune explains.

A bridesmaid location should offer at least some infrastructure and amenities with strong possibilities of more in the project pipeline.

Will bride suburbs continue to perform well?

In a word: yes.

Think back to where you grew up and the most expensive location in that region: is it still renowned as being uber chic?

Most likely, it is - although admittedly, other suburbs you thought would be singletons for life as a kid are now well and truly in the bride category.

And finally....

Bridesmaid suburbs aren't usually everyone's idea of a Prince or Princess Charming property.

But there's a good reason why 30-something singletons, as well as couples and families, are choosing bride-to-be locations over their bride neighbours.

As Mr Darwon says, if nothing else, bridesmaid suburbs are an excellent option for buyers looking to get a foothold in the market. 

"With their affordable prices, great lifestyle benefits, and potential for investment returns, bridesmaid suburbs are definitely worth considering," he said.

We're here to help

If you're still unsure where or how to find a bridesmaid suburb near you, why not check out Listing Loop's property match option?

Just like a matchmaking dating site, our Perfect Match service enables buyers to find their dream home, just by telling us your preferred property points, including its location.

And, as Australia's leading marketplace for off-market and pre-market listings, you'll be ahead of the buyer competition before you even start the process!

Listing Loop members also gain access to a range of services including home loans, expert property buying support, conveyancing, utility connections and specialised property financing solutions. 

So, sign up today for free access to our hub of properties, or for more personalised support, learn about our BUYER ASSIST service here.


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