Homes of the Future: Mark McCrindle discusses housing trends

Thursday, June 16, 2016

What is shaping our built environment?

The first is population growth. Australia has just reached 24 million which means we have added an extra million people in less than 3 years, and most of this growth is in our larger capital cities. This is creating a shift from suburban to urban living; from the traditional horizontal communities to the new vertical ones. In our largest capital cities, two-thirds of all new housing approvals are high or medium density rather than detached homes. This densification is creating walkable communities, multi-use areas where people live, work and play in a more localised space, and of course increased access to transit and transport hubs. The other factor shaping developments is affordability. With rising house prices, Australians are looking for financially sustainable options which meet the needs of both lifestyle and affordability, and create the flexibility for our homes to change in tune with our needs and lifestyles.

What are the current trends and will they last?

While design trends come and go with the changing fashions, there are some broader development trends that are here to stay. The increased access to open spaces, in-door out-door areas, balconies, natural light and bringing vegetation into urban environments are all timeless trends that resonates with our temperate climate and needs. Similarly, with food central to our social environment, open-plan kitchens and meal areas in homes and open social spaces in offices are trends we will see continue.

How is technology affecting it?

Today’s technology is seamlessly integrated into our lives, and we are seeing the same seamless integration into our homes. The internet of things means that lighting, sound, temperature, entertainment and security in our domestic environments are all manageable through our personal devices. The decade ahead will see our pantries and fridges talk to our devices to update shopping lists, our home entertainment experience continue playing seamlessly on our portable devices and our hydrogen cars help power our homes.

Image source: The Clipsal Smart Home range (courtesy of

What are the demographic trends?

Homes of the future will have the flexibility to accommodate multiple generations living under the one roof. They will meet the changing needs of a more culturally diverse community and have clever innovations to facilitate support to Australians living independently in their homes to a much older age than we currently see.

What does the future hold?

While Generation Z, who are just starting their careers, will have to pay more for their homes in the future, these buildings and the built environment in which they sit will far exceed what their parents experienced in their first homes. Not only will the technologies and fittings in the home be exciting but the community spaces, café culture and neighbourhood amenities will continue to adjust and adapt to meet the lifestyle expectations of the 21st Century generations.

Sydney's Rising Star Suburbs

Monday, January 04, 2016

Analysis of the Urban Living Index shows the
top 3 growth areas to watch

The Urban Living Index rates each of Sydney’s suburbs based on five key liveability factors: Community, Employability, Amenity, Accessibility and importantly, Affordability.

While some of Sydney’s most glamorous suburbs such as Bondi, Neutral Bay and Manly did very well on the first four measures, they did not do well in the affordability category. The cost of living and the cost of housing are currently red-hot issues for Sydney siders and so affordability is in many ways the priority issue with the other lifestyle measures remaining purely theoretical for those priced out of an area.

The majority of Sydneysiders (51%) believe that their area will be even less affordable in three years’ time than it is today- which is almost five times as many as those who believe their area will become more affordable. And most strikingly, almost 9 in 10 Sydney residents (88%) state that housing affordability will be a massive or significant challenge for the next generation.

With this in mind, we have analysed the Urban Living Index data of all Sydney suburbs to find the areas that have excellent affordability- but also rate very well on the other lifestyle measures.

While there are 25 suburbs that score 15 or above (out of 20) for affordability, there are three areas in this list that have great results in the other liveability categories as well.

1st Lalor Park

Lalor Park and the adjoining Kings Langley toped our hot spotting list. The affordability score (15) was excellent, and these suburbs have an amenity score (a measure of the number of shops, restaurants, arts and recreation facilities and educational options in the suburb) which was very good. In fact these suburbs scored higher on the local amenity provisions than suburbs including Newport, Wahroonga and Frenchs Forest. Similarly Lalor Park and Kings Langley scored well on accessibility (a measure that looks at public transport, employment access and walkability of an area) and above beach and harbour side suburbs like Avalon and Rose Bay.

While the overall score for Lalor Park-Kings Langley is in the “Very Good” category, its excellent affordability ranking makes it a suburb likely to boom.

2nd Menai

Menai and the adjoining suburbs of Lucas Heights and Woronora are the next suburbs set to take off based on this analysis. Relative to other Sydney suburbs, the affordability is in the excellent category and this is matched by the employability category. So the combination of good employment numbers, a significant local economy and access to housing more affordable than much of Sydney, this area in Sydney’s south is a clear hotspot.

3rd Blaxland

The third most rated area from this affordability and liveability analysis is Blaxland at the foot of the Blue Mountains and the adjoining suburbs of Warrimoo and Lapstone. Just 8 minutes from the M4 motorway, and less than 10 minutes from the Western Sydney suburbs of Penrith and Emu Plains, this area has become part of Sydney’s greater west yet the affordability, along with the community and amenity scores lift it above many areas in the outer western Sydney ring.

As the urban living index data shows, liveability depends on more than just water views and beach access- the practical factors of educational options, employment access, public transport and other built amenity and of course affordability all make an area desirable and facilitate lifestyle. That is why each of these areas have rated on the Index above the well-heeled suburbs of Palm Beach, Belrose and Vaucluse and it is why they stand out as rising stars.

This research we conducted for Urban Taskforce Australia is an example of robust research generating significant media activity and reader interest. This particular piece was summarised in the Sydney Morning Herald here, and as you can see from the image below was in the top 5 most read columns on the day in the Sydney Morning Herald, the Melbourne Age and the Brisbane Times.

For more information

The Urban Living Index was developed by McCrindle for Urban Taskforce Australia. More information and interactive maps are available at

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


neutral bay church hornsby households tips in the media emerging generations friendship The Daily Edition Christmas season ashley mckenzie university communities parenting Australian communities SMSF TDE mccrindle tea ABS data visualisation 1994 sydneycity dreaming WA Sydney keynote speaker schools students relational fears volunteers students Gen X water high density apartments list infographic wall blaxland 10 years future-proof presentations education research the changing face of stay home salary property price wealth and income teach future clothing in depth interviews event survey Queensland: QLD affordable Adelaide office Scouts economy cloudy days proactive collaborative education workplace shbc millionth australia newspaper social commentator mining boom future of work qualitative research video organisations DESTEL baby boom middle class meetings bureau rental stress sector wide study supply and demand analysis Wagga Wagga data marriage national private wealth baby name trends Aussies financial rise of local dare to dream Research Executive earn lalor park facts winter business ethnography darwin kate middleton sydney speaker internship life media activity budget emerging technologies social shifts business index fresh sunny days not-for-profit youth mccrindle young australians Northern Beaches housing market australian communities trends report Valentine’s Day follow financial independence brand experience offenders Royals hobart NSW men public speaking demographic trends population map PSI GPO forum ACF social researchers school satisfaction staying in easy rider Wodonga personal growth long weekend state dessert define woolworths baby name finance greatness authenticity speakers employers February 16 emerging trends debt media demographer house price house prices repayments Christmas lunch pharmacies market research generation research visualisation criminal quote perth entrepreneurs of today monarchy Canberra faux-cilising Gen Y renter of the future Financial Planning Association of Australia Northern Beaches Christian School housing baby acf15 Channel Seven Merry Christmas names Northern beaches Event 1975 Financial Planning Association forecasting coffee Myth futurist tertiary education urban living index mortgage residents Australia Day hello fresh new york times mother's day Caregiver student financial dreams South Australia tv REIV Conference outsourcing owning a home New South Wales optimistic population socialites careers entrepreneur news visualisation cars australians staying home more Social Trend career royal influence office opening mateship mythbusters insight pharmacy intern organisational culture future of education urban living professional development 40 million education sector teacher parents 2014 consumer cost buildings easter geomapping educated paying to work medicine local communities priorities learning styles renting Word Up balance TAS debate online shopping ease of travel interactive wages average aussie overcast world bondi narcissism social research innovative gold coast wealth and income distribution global financial crisis city financial future EFF graphs Financial Planning Week Hornsby Shire Council area entertainment millennials Queensland litter Population Clock cancelling event innovation meals social enquiry sports Charlotte sydneysiders generation Z NT visual Generation Y 2012 thought leadership moderators guide housing trends Australian Home weather capital city SA not for profit small business australian communities forum townhouses eliane miles data analyst Tuesday Trends research families happiness trends shopper's pick house price rise challenge Assistant Store Manager skills wolloomooloo social change house storytelling going out goal goals the australian dream omnibus Melbourne shifts charity trend tuesday Australian Families toys 24,000,000 demographics hopes generations digital brands social media baby boomers lifestyle social commentary brisbane Tasmania leader gen z teachers generational trends suburb identity sun cultural diversity resilience 2016 pyrmont global population growth FOMO generation alpha "know the times" child care change increasing densification relevant The ABC of XYZ workplace culture New Zealand food CBD technology VIC work Real Estate Institute of Victoria environmental scanning rich google Aussie high school equip tableau consumerism commute ultimo office space low density teaching high density trends of 2016 social impact statistics Christchurch schools safe unemployment mentor optus my business awards social life weekly earnings growth jobs of the future ashley fell young people land of the middle class ipswich Netflix study group Love professional public holiday twentyseventeen Kiwi norwest transport royal family NEETs social lives wellbeing group session Australian demographics divorce divorce rate collaboration Tuesday Trend home dream Territory real wealth participants friends royal focus groups snapshot engage investment slideshare publication marriages aged care puzzle work-life conferences rule keeper staff Northern Territory System's Architect wealth distribution school learning politics communications English plans Australian Census potts point 2013 logan know the times forecast experience seasons conference World Water Day panel mccrindle research investor Australian Dream google for education social trends local housing growth work mates 24 million award JOMO training high density living networking religion Australian Communities Trends growing population social analysis learn Channel 7 infographic apartment cash leadership community deloitte Crime Rates crows nest income personalities education future census australian social research affordability aussie culture huffington post hills shire population milestone social nfp curiosity insights eliane Deaths millenials etiquette case study urban program 2015 community engagement ageing population year 12 energy trends of 2017 women vegemite demographic daily commute IT Specialists Births customer Bathburst Australian Bureau of Statistics Duchess of Cambridge earning selfie global generations christianity language poker master princess charlotte online workforce 23 million 1980 waverton motivate anzac mobile events cold trends analyst Do It Yourself keynote speaker healthy future 2020 Wellington domestic faux-ciliser property education future report ideas Geoff Brailey employment internet gender researcher national crime rates presentation post rationalism national wealth future proofing marrickville faux-cilise Australian schools government internships teleworking christmas HSC rain culture jobs communication holiday unaffordable DIY living tattoos vegetarian children aged care gen alpha megatrends baby names learner property market rising house prices Australians future proof family moreton bay trend alpha world youth day Australian Trends earnings Western Australia Education Future Forum village society trends manly ACF 2016 Mark McCrindle father's day leadership workshop click Generation X baby name predictions media commentary capital cities retirement entrepreneurial mover and shaker optus Real Estate youth unemployment new office suburban living couple home owner cartodb economic menai conference presentation Kirsten Brewer builders housing affordability Christmas presents educhat keynote ageing daily telegraph winter blues REIV National Conference university degree sunburnt country sydney event suburbs 2017 grandparents demographic transformations spend cooking states year 7 rent thrive research services professional speaker brand conference speaker urban taskforce non profit tuesday investing ACT Sydney cost of living wedding social researcher January 26th celebration annual income 1968 mccrindle in the media crime Res Vis summer marketing victoria resource cancelling plans New Zeland prince george shopping environment wage holidays sector focus group McCrindle Speakers report tea FPA Australia Day 2017 poor product sentiments survey design recap mythbusting household sector wide royal baby research data responsive engagement home ownership media release typical australian workshop research pack society cancel plans Engineering Manager stats community event school students socialising sustainable communicate results