If you're thinking of moving from the city to Wollongong, you've come to the right place!
Anytime you move home, it's a big moment, especially when you're moving a long distance or to a whole new area. Preparation and research are some of the best tools to relieve those moving day jitters, so let's hit the road and look at the top 10 things you need to know about moving from Sydney to Wollongong.
For all the great things about Sydney, it has the notable downside of being the most expensive city to live in the entire country. This is both in terms of purchasing a house or renting accommodation and also the everyday costs of food, electricity, entertainment, transport and more. This is the number one reason people are looking for alternate places to live. Sydney is simply too expensive, even for those with a decent income.
Whenever you move, you need to factor in both the initial costs of building and the ongoing costs, such as the cost of living and upkeep. Lower ongoing costs mean more money for you to pay off loans.
The big advantage of building in Wollongong is the housing prices are far more affordable than they are in the New South Wales capital. The median house price in Wollongong is about $1.28m, while apartments are at around $720,000.
What really puts this into context is you'll get a lot more for your dollar in Wollongong than in Sydney. Wollongong provides bigger blocks of land, better locations, and the chance to build a bigger home than you would be able to for the same price in Sydney.
Though you're planning to leave the big city, it doesn't mean you have to leave it behind for good. You can either make the drive or take a variety of bus and train options.
Wollongong train station is only a 1–1.5 hour drive from the city, meaning you can still go to the city for the day for a trip, work, shopping, concerts, or sporting events.
A train trip from Wollongong station to the Sydney city centre takes about 2 hours. Sydney trains travel to Wollongong station at regular intervals. The same route by bus will take about twenty minutes longer.
Many people travel to Sydney each day for work purposes, so during peak hours, the time of the drive can increase significantly, therefore making public transport an attractive option.
Due to its size, Sydney has more job vacancies than anywhere else in Australia. Meanwhile, Wollongong hasn't got the same type of booming job market, with an unemployment rate above the national average.
This isn't to say that Wollongong doesn't have job opportunities; however, if possible, you should try to have work lined up before you make your move. Knowing where your next few paychecks are coming from is a huge stress reliever, especially if you have a family. Research Wollongong to see what companies and businesses match your skill set and experience and see what's available.
Some people do make the commute to Sydney or work for Sydney companies remotely from Wollongong, so there are options for those who think outside the box.
Whether you have children or are looking to continue your own learning, Wollongong has a wide range of educational facilities. People come from all over New South Wales to study at the renowned University of Wollongong.
There are plenty of quality educational facilities for your children, from kindergarten to high school. Remember, a general rule of thumb is locations close to schools tend to be more in demand and, therefore, expensive. However, in Wollongong, this will still be much cheaper than the equivalent in Sydney.
Naturally, your and your family's healthcare options are important, no matter where you move. Wollongong has plenty of healthcare options, including GPs, hospitals, and dentists.
For more specialised care, you may have to travel to Sydney, depending on the situation. It's an unfortunate reality that most of the top specialists tend to reside in capital cities, so consider your and your family's health needs before making any move. For more general healthcare, Wollongong has you more than covered.
Wollongong has a population of around 300,000 which is much lower than the 5.3 million living in Sydney. Therefore, the first thing you'll notice moving from the hustle and bustle of the city is the more relaxed atmosphere in the Wollongong area. For those who are Sydney born and raised, this might take some getting used to in the same way people used to the country can find the city a bit overwhelming.
The plus side of this is a stronger community feel, fewer traffic jams, and a chance to be closer to nature in the region.
Being close to the ocean, Wollongong has a subtropical climate. During summer, you can expect temperatures to reach a high of 28 °C and a low of 17 °C. Winters, on the other hand, can be quite windy, which makes the highs of 18 °C and lows of 7 °C even chillier.
Knowing the climate isn't just about knowing how many jumpers to pack. It also plays an important role in the design of your home. A quality local builder can create a home design that will work with the environment rather than against it. This means your home will be at a comfortable temperature more often without the use of air-conditioning or heating, saving you a bundle in temperature control costs.
Compared to other areas in the country, Wollongong has a fairly stable climate, meaning plenty of pleasant days throughout the year.
No matter where you move, you need to consider what the best floor plan is for your lifestyle and needs. This can differ greatly based on whose home it will be. For example, a four-bedroom, double-storey home would be perfect for a family of four with another on the way. However, this design might be too much maintenance for a retired couple.
No one can predict the future, but we can make an educated guess. If you and your partner are planning to have children and want to buy a dog as well, your future home should be able to accommodate these changes. Talking to a trusted builder will help you determine what the best home design for you is.
One of the key factors in building the ideal home is finding the perfect builder for the job. We highly recommend hiring someone who knows the Wollongong area and who has built plenty of homes there before. A local builder will either have floor plans tried and tested in the area or have the expertise to custom-build the perfect Wollongong home for you.
The right choice of builder will make the entire building process easier and less stressful. They will communicate with you and use their years of expertise to bring your dream home to life.
For anyone looking for a quieter place to raise a family, retire or just live their lives, Wollongong offers a great balance of city life and beautiful surroundings. Whether you love a day at the beach, a coffee with friends at a cafe, or a lovely stroll in the country, Wollongong has something to offer you. With more affordable housing and a lower cost of living than Sydney, Wollongong offers a fantastic opportunity for new home buyers, so don't miss out!
You can find further helpful resources about building & living In Wollongong here:
Looking to build your next home in the Wollongong region? Whether you're after a custom design or a knockdown rebuild, A Class Building will be there every step of your home-building journey. Our experienced team knows the region and has built many houses that locals call home. We'd love to be a part of turning your dream home into a reality, so get in touch with us today!