The Macarthur region isn’t the most well known area for investors. It doesn’t have the cosmopolitan flair of Newcastle, nor the coastal appeal of Wollongong. Or the razzle-dazzle of the Gold Coast. It’s not a city. Most people would have trouble defining exactly where its boundaries lie.
Nonetheless, the Macarthur region has been quietly growing and flourishing under the radar. In fact it’s predicted to have 500,000 people by 2036 and expected to have a greater population than Wollongong or the Sunshine Coast.
Its skyrocketing population, thriving economy and idyllic lifestyle make it a red hot target for investors. But what exactly is Macarthur and what makes it so attractive?
Where Sydney meets the countryside
Where is Macarthur?
Macarthur covers a large area of Sydney’s south west. It has been described as where Sydney meets the countryside. Its main centres are Campbelltown and Camden as well as the growing town of Picton. The Wollondilly Shire makes up the largest part of the region and is a predominantly rural area with the Warragamba Dam in it. Macarthur is a region of rolling green hills and pastoral grasslands with some fast growing cities and towns.
So why is Macarthur a prime investment target?
The new Edmonton Station and Leppington stations have also given residents better access to transport.
Highly rated lifestyle
In a recent user generated list on homely.com.au, two suburbs in Macarthur were rated as the absolute best places to live in NSW. Camden was ranked ninth and St Andrews at third position. They both ticked all the boxes for the site such as safety, accessibility, cost of living and cleanliness. St Andrews scored exceptionally highly for things like schooling and peace and quiet and internet access. This is played out in the data. 500 people a month are moving into the Camden area and the residential estates are flourishing. Housing developments are either planned or underway at Bardia, Oran Park, Cobbitty, Gregory Hills, Menangle Park, Appin, Gilead and Wilton.
The region itself is home to national parks, botanical gardens, riding trails and with its wonderful produce has been declared a “foodie’s paradise”. With such a splendid combination of nature and outdoors as well as thriving large central cities like Campbelltown it’s a real drawcard for young families. And young families are certainly flocking there.
Macarthur has been playing catch up with its infrastructure as the population has shot up. But now both State and Federal governments are firmly committed to putting in public transport, better roads and retail hubs. The State Government are drawing up plans for a Greater Macarthur Priority Growth Area.
Meanwhile, a $240 million redevelopment of the retail shopping centre, Macarthur Square, has been completed. With over 300 speciality stores and 4,000 car parking spaces this will open up the area for commerce. The south west rail link which opened in 2015, and connects Sydney to the area, has been a major boon for the Macarthur region. In March 2017 a consortium was appointed to make a feasibility study for a rail line out to the proposed Badgerys Creek airport. The new Edmonton Station and Leppington stations have also given residents better access to transport.
The $10 billion dollar project will create around 9,000 jobs and increase tourism in the region.
The Badgerys Creek airport itself will be a massive windfall for the area. The proximity of Macarthur to the airport will open up the area to more jobs, commerce and trade. The $10 billion dollar project will create around 9,000 jobs and increase tourism in the region. The new airport will also help ignite the economy, which is already going great guns. As we know, a positive local economy is a good sign for those thinking of investing.
Macarthur has excellent capital growth. House prices are surging as its population increases. A burgeoning area such as Gregory Hills has experienced 9.9% growth per annum over the last three years for its house prices. The two big centres, Camden and Campbelltown, have experienced 6.2% and 7.2% per annum respectively over the last ten years according to Residex figures. Prices in the area are predicted to continue increasing at a faster rate than the Sydney average.
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Gregory Hills itself is fascinating. It’s a great example of how the Macarthur region is gathering steam. It’s a master planned community with parklands, a large shopping centre and town hall on their way. Gregory Hills is in the heart of the Macarthur region, between Camden and Campbelltown. It has been an instant hit since its development, with land being snapped up very quickly. It’s estimated to have 300,000 people in 30 years time.
Equally rental yield is on a positive trajectory. Camden houses have a median rental of around $530/ week and Campbelltown is around $455/ week. The rental demand remains high and there’s a steady upward arc over the last ten years. It’s also affordable, the average house prices in Camden are $702,500 and in Campbelltown just $586,000.
The Macarthur region ticks all the boxes that we frequently set out for potential investment areas. It has a booming population, strong capital growth and good rental yields and heavy planned investment in infrastructure. The extra cherries on the top are the planned Badgerys Creek airport that will bring in jobs, tourism and commerce. Also the redeveloped Macarthur shopping centre is a huge boon to the region along with the continual expansion of the south west rail link. For the savvy investor Macarthur offers an affordable entry into the Sydney market.