McCrindle were delighted to partner with Sekisui House to produce The New Australian Dream Report. This study, involving an online survey of Sydney residents, exploring how the Australian dream has changed and evolved.
The new Australian dream is about achieving financial freedom
For residents of Australia’s biggest city, living the Australian dream means achieving financial freedom and independence (52%), as well as spending quality time with loved ones and friends (44%). The dream of financial freedom and independence, as well as increased free time, is closely linked to home ownership with the cost of housing representing more than half of average household expenditure (52%).
Achieving financial freedom linked to home ownership
For Sydney residents, apartment living is an attractive way of increasing financial freedom and lifestyle benefits, as they reduce costs and save time due to fewer maintenance requirements. Apartments also provide increased security and greater accessibility. These core benefits of apartment living also happen to be the greatest challenges of living in a detached house (maintenance 55%, price 50% and high running costs 44%).
Apartment dwellers save time and money on home maintenance
Home maintenance is a major difference between apartment-style living and living in a detached house. People living in apartments save an average of $3,713 a year alone on home maintenance, or $71 per week, compared to those in detached houses, which is a saving of 71%.
Sydneysiders don’t just save money on home maintenance, they also save time. Apartment owners save an average of 270 hours a year on home maintenance compared to owners of detached houses. Apartment owners also save 5 hours per week because they’ve chosen to live in a ‘low maintenance’ home.
The key benefits of apartment living
When it comes to describing their dream home, Sydneysiders are focused on the elements of safety and location with the most important quality of a dream home being safety and security (37%). This is followed by a desirable location (36%) and an abundance of natural light (25%). Each of these essential qualities outrank more traditional aspirations such as a big backyard (23%), lots of storage (16%), a large garage (11%) or a pool room to display life’s trophies (2%).
According to Sydneysiders, there are 4 main benefits to apartment style living:
1. Financial benefits
Price is the most attractive feature of a new apartment (40%). People in Sydney are also attracted to the fact that apartments have lower running costs with 1 in 5 (19%) saying cheaper gas and electricity is a key benefit of living in an apartment.
2. Low maintenance
Sydneysiders are drawn to the low maintenance of apartment-style living. Nearly 1 in 3 (31%) state that low maintenance attracts them to moving to a new apartment.
3. Strong sense of security
1 in 5 Sydneysiders (21%) are attracted to the enhanced safety and security of apartment living, while a similar proportion (18%) are drawn to related benefits such as secure parking.
1 in 5 Sydneysiders (20%) value proximity to public transport. Sydneysiders also view access to social amenities such as shops and cafes (12%), building accessibility (11%) and additional apartment facilities such as a gym or pool (10%) as key benefits.
The future of Sydney is looking up
Abounding in natural beauty, with its world-famous harbour, spectacular beaches and expansive national parks, Sydney is a desirable place to live. Residents agree that Sydney’s natural environment (44%), climate (33%) and dynamic lifestyle (26%) are some of the city’s greatest strengths.
As Sydney’s vibrant population continues to grow and change, so too are residents’ dreams and aspirations. Today, 2 in 5 Sydneysiders (40%) dream of owning any type of home, irrespective of size or shape. The redefinition of the modern Australian dream, coupled with a 28% growth in the number of apartments over the past decade highlights the changing preferences towards housing in Sydney, with more people believing that ‘homes’ come in all shapes and sizes.
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