NSW’s new permit system locks investors out of Central Coast hotspots

Even though it remains subject to the same restrictions as the rest of Greater Sydney, those looking to visit the Central Coast will now need a travel permit. 

Central Coast NSW spi

Property investors planning to inspect properties on the Central Coast will have to reschedule, following the introduction of the NSW government’s new travel permit system.

While regions like Shellharbour and Central Coast are otherwise subject to the Greater Sydney lockdown rules, they’re being treated as regional areas when it comes to the new travel permit requirements.

“For the purposes of this public health order and permit, Greater Sydney will no longer include Shellharbour and the Central Coast,” NSW Health said in a statement.

That means that property investors will no longer be able to cross over from Greater Sydney into either of these regions to inspect a property once the permit system comes into effect on 21 August. 


As per a previous statement issued by the government, “any person” inspecting real estate in the regions must now genuinely need a home to live in – “no investment properties”.

Those who breach the new rules risk a $3,000 on-the-spot fine.

“The increased fines and heightened police presence are about ensuring people who are doing the wrong thing are caught and punished appropriately,” NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said earlier this week.

Under the rules of the new permit system, even those looking to set up a permanent home in the regions will need to apply for a permit before venturing out to view a property.

While scoping out a potential buy isn’t allowed under the current rules, property investors are allowed to apply for a permit if they need to travel to a second home located in regional NSW, but only to use it as work accommodation or if the home requires urgent maintenance and repairs.

Even then, only one person is allowed to make the trip.

While investors can still technically buy a property sight unseen, the introduction of the regional permit system is likely to see many investors looking at buying a regional property hold off until conditions improve. 

Asked how the Property Council of Australia expects the new permit to impact the market, NSW executive director Luke Achterstraat expressed hope that the new system will be simple and straightforward.

Speaking to Smart Property Investment, he said, “This is especially important for those construction workers who have only just now been given a lifeline through vaccination to return to work after an extended forced break.”

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