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City workers flocking to Ballarat and Geelong

By Stefanie Garber
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Ballarat and Geelong are seeing price growth as more CBD workers choose to live in these towns, according to buyer’s agent Cate Bakos.

Ms Bakos, a director at Empower Wealth, said increasing numbers of workers were opting to live in these areas and commute to their high-income jobs in the Melbourne CBD.

“I find that those people who are earning serious major capital city incomes are bringing significant money into the area and driving up prices,” she said.

“We have that taking place in Melbourne with some of our regional centres that are within driving distance or commuting distance."

According to RP Data, Ballarat has seen 10-year average annual growth of 5.7 per cent while Geelong saw growth of 5.8 per cent per annum.

With the fast train, travel to Melbourne’s CBD takes 64 minutes from Ballarat and 55 minutes from Geelong, according to Ms Bakos.

“If it's less than an hour and 20 mins, there will be people who will do it,” she said.

“Even living within Melbourne, sometimes we can spend an hour and 20 mins in traffic getting to work.”

She believes affordability is a major motivator for people to live outside the city.

In addition, she thinks many people are attracted to the laid-back country life.

“These are people who have taken advantage of buying power and lifestyle but still kept their jobs,” she said.

Ms Bakos advises investors to consider major regional centres within a reasonable distance to the CBD for investment potential.

“A really big plus for any regional area is if it is potentially commutable to the major city,” she said.

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