Melbourne’s home buyer hotspots

President of the Real Estate Institute of Victoria (REIV), Leah Calnan, shares Melbourne’s top growth suburbs for 2020. While Melbourne continues to recover from COVID-19, Leah anticipates the only impact to buyers will be the median house price slightly dropping by 3-5% over the colder months.

“I don’t think there’s going to be any bargains out there, the Victorian property market is very strong and will bounce back in the next few months.”

Leah puts some of it down to real estate agents quickly adapting to the pandemic and turning to digital solutions to allow home opens and auctions to continue.

Based on the median house price data from January to March 2020, Leah reveals the top performers continue to be in Inner Melbourne – explaining it all comes down to lifestyle and affordability.

Melbourne’s top growth suburbs


Growing by 16.3% since last quarter, Essendon takes the lead for suburbs in Melbourne’s north. Located in-between the airport and central business district, this suburb is great for those looking for an apartment and a variety of public transport options.


The perfect pick for those looking to start small or downsize. With units on the rise, sales in Brunswick East have increased by 17.3% this quarter, while Brunswick West follows closely behind at 16.1%.


With 32.4% growth in the last quarter alone, you can expect investors to gravitate towards this suburb. Northcote is known for being an entertainment hub, with established cafés, restaurants, and endless public transport options.


If you’re looking to purchase near the bay, then Elsternwick might be for you. Property sales have increased by 16.8%.


This suburb has dominated the Victorian market with 47.2% growth over the last quarter. With the median unit price at $452,500, it’s an affordable option for those wanting to break into the Melbourne property market.

Home buying tips

Chat to a local real estate agent

“Some properties simply just don’t go to market,” says Leah. In some situations, a seller may choose to sell privately and not advertise at all.

A local real estate agent could keep an eye out on potential properties and open doors that would otherwise be closed.

Look at the next suburb over

“If your preferred suburb no longer meets your budget, look at that next suburb. We often refer to it as a bridesmaid suburb,” says Leah.

Consider regional areas

“Just because you work somewhere, it doesn’t necessarily mean you need to live in close proximity.”

Leah explains that with more people opting for flexible working hours, there’s less of a need to live close to work. It allows first home buyers to look beyond the central Melbourne suburbs.

“COVID-19 has highlighted for people to re-look at what’s important to them and how they create flexibility.”

Research each suburb

“Have a look at what the local councils are saying about the infrastructure and development.”

Leah urges potential buyers to take a look at council websites to find the latest research and projects.

“They’re often familiar with changes to local subdivisions or local council changes. They might also be aware of what changes might be happening at local schools, whether it be primary or secondary. It can make a difference in purchasing a property from a price point.”

“If you’re interested in taking a deeper look at a suburb you can check our stats and historic values on the REIV website.”

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