• May 9, 2019

From an agent’s perspective it’s always interesting – and vital to engaging would-be purchasers – to know just where our buyers are coming from. What proportion of buyers is predominantly local, are people moving in from neighbouring regions or are we seeing an influx of people from interstate and overseas?

It’s fair to say that buyers seek out our area for similar reasons, namely the colourful urban lifestyle, highly regarded schools, village appeal, proximity to the city and great social element. However, buyer demographics change as the property market changes, so who’s purchasing in the Inner West in the current climate?

It’s definitely still chiefly locals who are buying in their own neighbourhood and they’re largely responsible for the strong results we’ve been achieving since the start of the year. Their entrenchment in the community, their intimate understanding of the local way of life and a feel for the nuances of every street means that these buyers have plenty of emotion driving their perceived value of a property.

7 Coneill Place, Forest Lodge


Ben Southwell recently sold two prominent properties both to local buyers. Firstly, a contemporary five-bedroom home at 7 Coneill Place, Forest Lodge set a new suburb record, selling for nearly $4.1m. Secondly, an award-winning new warehouse-inspired live/work space at 33A Bruce Street, Rozelle set the highest sale price in the suburb this year at $3.7m.

33A Bruce Street, Rozelle


“Locals have an appetite for homes that tick all the boxes or offer something a little bit special,” says Ben. “We’re starting to see builders and developers reach out to agents to get a better understanding of what the market is demanding in terms of quality. More and more they’re trying to break the mould and deliver something that will stand the test of time and that they can be proud of. Both Coneill Place and Bruce Street were created by builders who put their heart and soul into the projects and the prices achieved reflect this.”

According to Ben, when larger residences such as these hit the market it gives locals a rare chance to upsize to a generous family home in an area where they’ve cemented their lives, families and friends.

“We also certainly don’t want to dismiss North Shore buyers,” says Ben. “If we look at their property journey, many of these people originated from the Inner West and moved out to find more space. When these bigger properties come up it offers them an opportunity to move back to an area and lifestyle they were once accustomed to.”

“When it comes to buyers from the Eastern Suburbs, there has long been this misconception that they’ve got pots of money and they’re going to come into a new area and pay through the nose, which is simply misguided and disrespectful. They’re equally as informed and ask the same questions.”

The Inner West has grown exponentially in recent years and many of its formerly less desirable pockets have been regenerated, meaning more options to stay put. Forest Lodge is a prime example, with the former working class precinct emerging as one of the Inner West’s most desirable addresses, commanding big prices. “So long as the Inner West continues to adapt to the needs of residents, we will continue to see the loyalty of local buyers,” says Ben.

Leading Cobden & Hayson sales results so far this year:

– 3/19A Wharf Road, Birchgrove – highest price paid at auction in 2019

– 7 Coneill Place, Forest Lodge – near $4.1m, new suburb record

-33A Bruce Street, Rozelle – $3.7m, highest sale in Rozelle in 2019

-107 Brighton Street, Petersham – sold for $350,000 over reserve with 22 registered bidders

-44 Curtis Road, Balmain – sold over reserve for $3.1m



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