How priced-out families are pooling cash to live big

5 Quambone St, Worongary
Families are pooling resources and embracing multi-generational living as a response to soaring house prices and shifting demographics.
Dual-living properties are in hot demand, with homeowners opting for larger dwellings to accommodate adult children and ageing grandparents instead of downsizing.
In many cases, it’s a win-win as families share expenses and caregiving responsibilities amid a cost-of-living crisis.
But it also presents challenges for Gen Xers whose kids had flown the nest but are now returning, often with partners, after finding themselves unable to get a foot on the property ladder.
11 Coombe Ave, Hope Island
An example of the trend is a recent sale at Hope Island, where a dual-living house with two kitchens, two laundries and two separate entries changed hands for $1.2m.
Marketing agent Warren Hickey, of Hope Island Island Realty, fielded overwhelming interest through the campaign.
Mr Hickey said “inquiries were through the roof” for the five-bedroom, three-bathroom house at 11 Coombe Ave.
Buyers are looking to accommodate adult children as well as ageing parents
Prospective buyers ranged from an interstate couple planning care for an elderly parent to a large family considering hosting international students to supplement their income.
“I have a lot of clients who sold a house three, four years ago when their kids have gone out to uni or work, and now their children at the age of 22 or 23 have come back because it is so expensive to rent or buy a place of their own,” Mr Hickey said.
“All of a sudden, the dynamic of the family has blown out again and the parents are dealing with four adults and four cars at home.
“But with aged care facilities now so expensive, we are also seeing a lot more grandparents who are selling the house they may have owned for 40 years and are able to contribute financially to a larger property where three generations are living together.”
Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows households of three generations increased more than 20 per cent over the most recently surveyed five-year period, from 275,000 in 2016 to 335,000 in 2021.
14 Georgina Street, Oxenford sold for $2.55m
In another recent transaction, Mr Hickey sold an Oxenford acreage property with two lakefront dwellings for $2.55m.
The 4,573 sqm property at 14 Georgina St was snapped up after just six days on the market.
The main residence has five bedrooms, a study and three bathrooms, while the second house has two bedrooms and two bathrooms.
And at Worongary, a hinterland property offering separate homes on acreage sold ahead of auction with an unconditional offer of $2.6m.
The Worongary home was snapped up ahead of auction
Al fresco living spaces and a pool
Agent Karl Grossman, of LJ Hooker Property Hub, said a local buyer secured the property at 5 Quambone St, where three generations of one family will live across two homes on a 4,068 sqm parcel.
Mr Grossman said 25 per cent of the 49 groups who inspected the home at 5 Quambone St wanted accommodation for extended family.
“These buyers were seeking a multi-generational solution amid the cost-of-living crisis,” Mr Grossman said.
“There were a lot of interested parties, including the buyer, who recognised the unique opportunity to have family so close but not under the one roof,” said Mr Grossman.
“The cost of living and increased interest rates have created a greater demand for properties where multiple family members can share the costs. It’s a great opportunity for older buyers who aren’t ready for retirement living and still want to be close by to help their children and grandchildren.”
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Mr Grossman said the three-bedroom, one-bathroom secondary home at Worongary was the original dwelling built on the site in the late 1980s.
“Interestingly, there was less than expected interest in the smaller property for rental income. Most buyers were families.”
The larger family home was built in 2014 and has six bedrooms and four bathrooms.
A national shortage of affordable housing was a key factor underpinning continued price growth, despite rising interest rates and inflation through 2022/23.
Smaller household sizes have put pressure of housing supply — and pushed prices up
PropTrack’s latest Home Price Index showed Queensland hit a fresh peak in September, with home prices across the state’s regions up about 5 per cent over the past 12 months.
Ray White Group chief economist Nerida Conisbee said Australia had “lagged behind” in building enough homes to meet the country’s changing demographic needs.
“Half of all households are now couples or singles without children,” Ms Conisbee said.
“Fewer children, an ageing population and more people living alone is driving up the number of homes we need, further accelerated by population growth.”

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