Which suburbs have the most affordable mortgages in Australia?

Marc Terrano 20 October 2015

Which suburbs have the most affordable mortgages in Australai

Who has the most leftover money after their mortgage repayments? We've identified the top 10 suburbs in each state.

We’ve compiled a nationwide and state-by-state comparison of the most affordable suburbs in Australia. By subtracting the average annual mortgage repayments from the average after-tax income for a household in that suburb, we can identify the suburbs with the lowest levels of mortgage stress. The bigger the difference, the less stressed you'll be.

Note that this won't usually be the suburbs with lower house prices. In those markets, mortgage payments are likely to take up a large percentage of household income. Nor will it be the ritziest suburbs: prices there are so high that even the well-off won't have a lot to spare.

The table below shows the 20 most affordable suburbs and cities, based on the amount of money the typical household has left after paying the mortgage. The top 20 list is dominated by regional areas. Since the majority of jobs are found in capitals, we've also done a top 10 analysis for capital cities and regional areas in each state.

The top 10 most affordable suburbs in Australia: capital cities

Western Australia bagged seven out of the top ten spots for most affordable capital city suburbs in the country, with Brentwood topping the list. Residents of Brentwood have an average household income of $75,398 per year to spend after mortgage repayments are made.

Also in the list are other Western Australian suburbs including Willagee, Cottesloe, North Dandalup, North Fremantle, Ardross and West Perth.

The only non-WA suburbs to make the list were Chapel Hill and Kenmore in Queensland, and Vale Park in South Australia.

AreaStateMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
BRENTWOODWA$827,500$37,926$113,324$75,398
WILLAGEEWA$596,500$27,339$97,530$70,191
COTTESLOEWA$1,842,000$84,422$153,834$69,412
KENMOREQLD$618,500$28,347$97,619$69,272
NORTH DANDALUPWA$336,500$15,422$84,167$68,745
VALE PARKSA$612,000$28,049$94,868$66,819
NORTH FREMANTLEWA$1,063,000$48,719$115,475$66,756
CHAPEL HILLQLD$704,500$32,289$97,619$65,330
ARDROSSWA$1,065,000$48,811$113,324$64,513
WEST PERTHWA$863,500$39,576$102,464$62,888

The top 10 most affordable suburbs in Australia: regional

If you prefer to swap sprawling city life for a simpler regional lifestyle, the most affordable suburb was St Andrews, Victoria, with an average income after repayments of $128,196. This was followed by Moranbah in Queensland, where the average household enjoys $90,162 per year after handling mortgage payments.

AreaStateMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
ST ANDREWSVIC$702,000$32,174$160,370$128,196
MORANBAHQLD$276,000$12,650$102,812$90,162
DAMPIERWA$602,500$27,614$115,641$88,027
MILLARS WELLWA$409,500$18,768$105,741$86,973
BULGARRAWA$428,000$19,616$105,741$86,125
BLACKWATERQLD$224,500$10,289$96,327$86,038
NICKOLWA$432,000$19,799$105,741$85,942
ROXBY DOWNSSA$351,000$16,087$101,997$85,910
PEGS CREEKWA$457,500$20,968$105,741$84,773
DYSARTQLD$267,000$12,237$94,821$82,584
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State by state comparison of most affordable suburbs

New South Wales

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

The remote Scotland Island in the Pittwater Estuary took out first place for NSW’s top 10 most affordable suburbs, with an average income of $60,869 per year remaining after home loan payments are made.

If getting to and from your house on a boat isn’t your ideal living arrangement, Normanhurst made it to second place with an average income after repayments of $46,379 - this is despite having a median house value of $358,000 more than Scotland Island.

Trailing at number 10 on the list was Warragamba, leaving its residents with just $38,638 in income once the mortgage is looked after. This suburb has a median house value of $382,500.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
SCOTLAND ISLAND$780,000$35,749$96,618$60,869
NORMANHURST$1,138,500$52,180$98,559$46,379
BALMAIN$1,685,000$77,227$121,742$44,515
WEST PYMBLE$1,441,500$66,067$109,844$43,777
TERREY HILLS$1,249,000$57,244$100,304$43,060
SOUTH TURRAMURRA$1,344,000$61,598$103,355$41,757
HUNTERS HILL$2,255,500$103,374$144,507$41,133
ROZELLE$1,381,000$63,294$102,275$38,981
BIRCHGROVE$1,807,500$82,841$121,742$38,901
WARRAGAMBA$382,500$17,531$56,169$38,638

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

If you want to pull up stumps in regional NSW, Singleton and Singleton Heights took out first place. The average income left over after mortgage repayments here is $59,147 with a median house value of $334,750.

Hot on the heels of first place was nearby Scone, in the Hunter region of NSW. It had a slightly lower median house price and average leftover annual income of $338,500 and $58,315 respectively.

Rounding out the top 10 was Wallerawang in the Central Tablelands near Lithgow, with a median house price of $237,000 and a remaining income of $50,350 per year.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
SINGLETON & SINGLETON HEIGHTS$334,750$15,343$74,489$59,147
SCONE$338,500$15,514$73,829$58,315
MUSWELLBROOK$271,500$12,443$69,138$56,695
COBAR$209,000$9,579$66,002$56,423
HUNTERVIEW$397,000$18,195$74,489$56,294
GREEN POINT$947,000$43,403$98,813$55,410
EAST BRANXTON$373,000$17,095$68,399$51,304
NORTH ROTHBURY$375,000$17,187$68,399$51,212
TELARAH$273,000$12,512$63,086$50,574
WALLERAWANG$237,000$10,862$61,212$50,350
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Victoria

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

Albert Park, the hosting suburb of the international Formula One Grand Prix, took the podium from the competition for most affordable capital city suburb in Victoria. It had an average remaining income of $57,028 once mortgage repayments were made.

In second place was Somerton, with an average income of $53,096 leftover and a median house value of $545,000 - well shy of Albert Park’s $1.533 million.

Wyndham Vale rounded out the top 10 list with an income after repayments of $37,893 and a median house value of $324,000.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
ALBERT PARK$1,533,500$70,283$127,311$57,028
SOMERTON$545,000$24,978$78,074$53,096
HAMPTON EAST$957,500$43,884$93,707$49,823
PORT MELBOURNE$1,224,000$56,098$102,299$46,201
WERRIBEE$322,500$14,781$56,565$41,784
MIDDLE PARK$1,888,500$86,553$127,311$40,758
WILLIAMSTOWN NORTH$804,500$36,872$77,208$40,336
WONGA PARK$927,000$42,486$81,329$38,843
SOUTH MELBOURNE$1,222,500$56,029$94,371$38,342
WYNDHAM VALE$324,000$14,850$52,743$37,893

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

Regional Victoria was topped by St.Andrews, with a median house value of $702,000 and an average remaining income of $128,196, followed by Portsea with a median house value of $1,576,600 and an after-mortgage repayment income of $80,042 per year.

The suburb with the lowest median house value in the top 10 - $104,500 in Rupanyup - saw owners keep an after-repayment income of $58,571.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
ST ANDREWS$702,000$32,174$160,370$128,196
PORTSEA$1,576,000$72,231$152,273$80,042
FLINDERS$896,500$41,088$106,505$65,417
RUPANYUP$104,500$4,789$63,360$58,571
EAGLE POINT$278,000$12,741$64,196$51,455
YINNAR$210,000$9,625$58,011$48,386
MURTOA$114,500$5,248$53,073$47,825
TRARALGON$256,500$11,756$59,327$47,571
GLENGARRY$358,500$16,431$63,644$47,213
TOONGABBIE$306,000$14,025$60,963$46,938
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Queensland

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

The most affordable suburb in Queensland’s capital cities was Kenmore in Brisbane’s South-West. This suburb had a median house value of $618,500 and left owners with an after-mortgage income of $69,272.

Nearby Chapel Hill took second place with a more expensive median house value of $704,500 and a household income of $65,330.

Cedar Creek, nearer to Logan and the Gold Coast, had the most expensive property prices in the list with a house value of $1.37 million and a household income after repayments of $61,374.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
KENMORE$618,500$28,347$97,619$69,272
CHAPEL HILL$704,500$32,289$97,619$65,330
CEDAR CREEK$1,376,000$63,065$124,439$61,374
BARDON$892,500$40,905$101,601$60,696
BALMORAL$936,000$42,899$102,615$59,716
UPPER BROOKFIELD$841,500$38,568$97,619$59,051
KENMORE HILLS$855,000$39,186$97,619$58,433
FIG TREE POCKET$868,000$39,782$97,619$57,837
MILTON$842,000$38,590$94,512$55,922
MOUNT NEBO$412,500$18,906$74,495$55,589

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

If regional Queensland is your pick, Moranbah, a coal mining town near Mackay, came in first with an after-mortgage income of $90,162 per household.

Second spot was taken by Blackwater, another coal mining town leaving residents with a household income of $86,938 per year once mortgage repayments were made.

The state’s most expensive regional properties in the top 10 list were in Calliope in Central Queensland, with a median house price of $343,000 but a high average income of $64,758 after repayments were made.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
MORANBAH$276,000$12,650$102,812$90,162
BLACKWATER$224,500$10,289$96,327$86,038
DYSART$267,000$12,237$94,821$82,584
BARNEY POINT$268,000$12,283$80,478$68,195
WEST GLADSTONE$303,000$13,887$80,478$66,591
SUN VALLEY$303,500$13,910$80,478$66,568
KIN KORA$314,500$14,414$80,478$66,064
SOUTH GLADSTONE$315,000$14,437$80,478$66,041
CLINTON$342,000$15,674$80,478$64,804
CALLIOPE$343,000$15,720$80,478$64,758
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Western Australia

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

As mentioned above, Brentwood took out first place in WA and Australia as a whole with its highest remaining income of $75,398 per year and a median house value of $827,500.

In second place was Willagee, 15 km South-South West of the Perth CBD, with a median house price over $300,000 less than Brentwood.

Daglish, a suburb in the trendy Subiaco area, was 10th in the list with an average remaining income of $66,756 per household.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
BRENTWOOD$827,500$37,926$113,324$75,398
WILLAGEE$596,500$27,339$97,530$70,191
COTTESLOE$1,842,000$84,422$153,834$69,412
NORTH DANDALUP$336,500$15,422$84,167$68,745
NORTH FREMANTLE$1,063,000$48,719$115,475$66,756
ARDROSS$1,065,000$48,811$113,324$64,513
WEST PERTH$863,500$39,576$102,464$62,888
KENSINGTON$907,500$41,592$104,468$62,876
MOUNT CLAREMONT$1,321,000$60,544$120,741$60,197
DAGLISH$1,133,000$51,928$111,918$59,990

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

Far away from the city, the major port town of Dampier took first place with an average household income of $88,027 remaining after mortgage repayments.

Second and third were close with Millars Well and Bulgarra, leaving homeowners with a remaining average income of $86,973 and $86,125 respectively.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
DAMPIER$602,500$27,614$115,641$88,027
MILLARS WELL$409,500$18,768$105,741$86,973
BULGARRA$428,000$19,616$105,741$86,125
NICKOL$432,000$19,799$105,741$85,942
PEGS CREEK$457,500$20,968$105,741$84,773
KAMBALDA EAST$101,500$4,652$84,276$79,624
BAYNTON$572,000$26,216$105,741$79,525
KAMBALDA WEST$154,000$7,058$84,276$77,218
PORT HEDLAND$848,500$38,888$112,808$73,920
NEWMAN$628,000$28,782$102,255$73,473
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Northern Territory

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

Northern Territory’s most affordable suburb was Ludmilla in Darwin’s inner suburbs. It had an after mortgage repayment take home income of $52,174, followed by Stuart Park and Bakewell in second and third with $47,934 and $43,943 respectively.

Gray, an inner city suburb in Palmerston, had the most affordable housing with a median value of $468,000 and a household income after repayments of $43,202.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
LUDMILLA$630,000$28,874$81,048$52,174
STUART PARK$722,500$33,114$81,048$47,934
BAKEWELL$532,500$24,405$68,348$43,943
PARAP$819,000$37,536$81,048$43,512
GRAY$468,000$21,449$64,752$43,303
WOODROFFE$470,000$21,541$64,752$43,211
DRIVER$478,000$21,908$64,752$42,844
MOULDEN$482,000$22,091$64,752$42,661
GUNN$568,500$26,055$68,348$42,293
WAGAMAN$523,000$23,970$64,820$40,850

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

Northern Territory’s most affordable regional suburbs list was topped by the beautiful beach town of Dundee. Homeowners here have a post-mortgage repayment income of $47,607.

Gillen had the highest median house value in the list at $464,000 and homeowners took home an average of $36,828 per household after repayments were made.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
DUNDEE BEACH$357,000$16,362$63,969$47,607
TENNANT CREEK$258,000$11,825$58,634$46,809
KATHERINE SOUTH$371,500$17,027$58,635$41,608
THE GAP$385,000$17,645$58,967$41,322
KATHERINE$393,000$18,012$58,635$40,623
KATHERINE EAST$397,000$18,195$58,635$40,440
SADADEEN$430,500$19,731$58,967$39,236
BRAITLING$455,500$20,876$58,967$38,091
GILLEN$464,500$21,289$58,967$37,678
BATCHELOR$306,000$14,025$50,853$36,828
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Tasmania

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

Historical South Hobart presented the most affordable suburb in Tasmania, with a median house value of $440,000 and household incomes of $43,982.

This was followed by Dynnyrne in Hobart, leaving homeowners with an annual income of $43,560 after mortgage repayments.

At the bottom of the top 10 list was Goodwood, also in Hobart, with a median house value of $217,000 and average remaining incomes of $37,643 per year.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
SOUTH HOBART$440,000$20,166$64,148$43,982
DYNNYRNE$538,500$24,680$68,240$43,560
WARRANE$239,000$10,954$53,219$42,265
MORNINGTON$266,500$12,214$53,219$41,005
MOUNT NELSON$503,000$23,053$63,833$40,780
NORTH HOBART$437,000$20,029$58,815$38,786
SANDY BAY$648,500$29,722$68,240$38,518
MONTAGU BAY$325,500$14,918$53,219$38,301
TAROONA$489,000$22,412$60,344$37,932
GOODWOOD$217,000$9,946$47,589$37,643

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

The most affordable suburb in regional Tasmania was Queenstown, on the west coast of the island.

The average household in Queenstown has an income of $58,218 after mortgage repayments. Second and third were Waverly and Ravenswood with close incomes of $46,809 and $46,648 respectively.

St Leonards had the highest median house values of $237,500 and take home incomes of $42,661.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
QUEENSTOWN$80,500$3,689$62,007$58,318
WAVERLEY$147,000$6,737$53,546$46,809
RAVENSWOOD$150,500$6,898$53,546$46,648
LULWORTH$217,000$9,946$53,924$43,978
ACTON$147,000$6,737$50,457$43,720
ST LEONARDS$237,500$10,885$53,546$42,661
SHOREWELL PARK$173,500$7,952$50,457$42,505
GEORGE TOWN$140,500$6,439$48,858$42,419
HILLCREST$189,500$8,685$50,457$41,772
SUMMERHILL$262,500$12,031$53,546$41,515
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South Australia

Top 10 most affordable capital city suburbs

Vale Park in Adelaide topped South Australia’s most affordable capital city suburbs list with a household income of $66,819 per year.

This was followed by Collinswood in second with an income of $61,273 after mortgage repayments were made and a median household income of $733,000.

Trailing in third was North Adelaide with a take-home income after repayments of $58,775 per year.

AreaMedian house valueAnnual mortgage repaymentsAv. after-tax income per householdIncome remaining
VALE PARK$612,000$28,049$94,868$66,819
COLLINSWOOD$733,000$33,595$94,868$61,273
NORTH ADELAIDE$852,000$39,049$97,824$58,775
UNLEY$917,000$42,028$97,800$55,772
WALKERVILLE$951,500$43,609$94,868$51,259
GILBERTON$969,500$44,434$94,868$50,434
HYDE PARK$1,067,500$48,926$97,800$48,874
MALVERN$1,067,500$48,926$97,800$48,874
CLAPHAM$589,000$26,995$75,677$48,682
CRAFERS WEST$600,500$27,522$75,267$47,745

Top 10 most affordable regional suburbs

If you’re calling regional South Australia home, the most affordable suburb was Roxby Downs, a mining town 563 km north of Adelaide.

Residents here took home $85,910 after repayments, due to the high incomes they receive.

This was followed by Whyalla Jenkins in second place with a lower household income of $58,383.

Methodology

This study by finder.com.au calculated the average mortgage repayments per year using a home loan rate of 5.1% and using median house value data from onthehouse.com.au. The average after tax income was calculated by deducting the relevant tax from the average wage for each postcode using data from the ATO. This was then used to calculate the remaining income after mortgage repayments were deducted and the suburbs were then ranked in descending order.

Picture: Ross Websdale, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (image cropped)

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