Real Estate Highhill
Highgate Hill is a riverside suburb famed for its community-focused vibe, relaxed, leafy aspect, and multitude of dining and entertainment options. Locals enjoy the best of both worlds with close proximity to the activities and facilities at West End and Southbank, while maintaining its peaceful pace and close-knit neighbourhood feel.
The suburb is rich in history and culture with Hardgrave Road’s dining strip representing several diverse cuisines including Vietnamese, Greek, Thai, Indonesian and Turkish.
Dornoch Terrace in Highgate Hill is one of Brisbane’s most enviable addresses as its elevated position gives it the title as having the best cityscape views. The street is home to two landmark residential buildings – Torbreck (built in 1960) and the Highgate (built in 2017). Highgate Hill covers approximately 1.3 square kilometres and its two parks (Lyons and Brydon Street) occupy 0.3% of the total area. The area has a friendly feel to it as neighbours stop to greet each other and Lyons Park brings locals together with its community garden.
Due to Highgate Hill’s central location, residents are spoiled for choice when it comes to public transport. The route 199 bus stops are dotted throughout the area, with a bus scheduled to come past and take you into the City every ten minutes. Train stations are within easy access with one located at Southbank and the other at Dutton Park. The CityCat also stops at Orleigh Park and Southbank.
Households in Highgate Hill are primarily professional couples (aged 20-29 years) and there are also many young families drawn to the great local atmosphere and strong reputation of Brisbane State High School and other fantastic local schools. The population is currently sitting around 6200 with 56% owner occupiers leaving the remaining 44% renting.
WHO ARE METROCITY REALTY?
Metrocity Realty is a boutique sales and property management real estate company specialising in Brisbane Real Estate. Above all else, we value our clients and work hard to ensure a smooth real estate experience for each and every one we deal with. Metrocity has maintained its dominant market share for the last 17 years through striving to deal professionally and with integrity.
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BUYING AND SELLING IN HIGHGHATE HILL
Throughout the course of 2018 we have seen house sales follow a similar pattern to the 2017 sales. Only six houses were reported to have sold in the first quarter of the year and the median sale price just below the million mark. Demand for houses in the area is huge as the relaxed lifestyle, close proximity to West End and Southbank, and access to quality schools in the area is extremely attractive to young families.
Throughout the course of 2018 we have seen house sales follow a similar pattern to the 2017 sales. Only six houses were reported to have sold in the first quarter of the year and the median sale price just below the million mark. Demand for houses in the area is huge as the relaxed lifestyle, close proximity to West End and Southbank, and the ready access to quality schools in the area is extremely attractive to young families.
With the construction of several new apartment complexes in the area drawing to completion, it appears that prices have now stabilised. With a median price of just under $500,000 buyers seem to be realising the great value of Highgate Hill apartments and are seizing the opportunity to own so close to the City. Potential owner occupiers love the Highgate Hill vibe and entertainment and dining options while investors can look forward to earning some great rental returns and future long-term growth.
HIGHGATE HILL RENTAL MARKET
We can finally take a breath of relief with the completion of several major apartment complexes in West End. The developments will add long-term value to the area with their world-class facilities and high-end finishes. While too many apartments have been built and there is an oversupply in the rental market in the short term, it is reassuring to know that developers are starting to realise this. This has led developers deciding to not proceed with a number of projects that had been planned, and finally this long period of growth is now coming to an end in 2019.
The good news is that median rental prices have now stabilised with the median weekly rent for houses sitting at $500 and for units at $350. That said, Highgate Hill is a high demand market, so it’s important to have a realtor who understand the area and can help you get the best price for your property, without letting it age on the market.
HIGHGATE HILL: A BRIEF HISTORY
Highgate Hill was originally a hunting ground and continued to be one until around the late 1850s. The area was lush with tropical vegetation, ranging from palms to figs to orchids. Some traces of this can still be seen in Highgate Hill gullies to this very day. As the settlement grew, saw pits were established along the Brisbane River. Timber was felled and used to construct some of the earlier buildings in Brisbane, as it is located so close to what is now the Brisbane CBD. While there were some initial growing pains, particularly with securing a supply of drinkable water, the suburb overcame its issues and began to grow at a steady pace.
Highgate Hill has always been one of Brisbane’s most desirable suburbs. Part of its initial draw in the late 1800s was the list of notable residents, and in the 1930s it was still considered one of Brisbane’s ‘dress circles’, in that it provided pleasant company (by way of neighbours) and a superior view (by way of its elevation relative to its neighbours). While a lot might have changed in the suburb, fortunately the height advantage hasn’t!
While apartments first started appearing in Highgate Hill in the 1960s, the area is still a blend of old and modern buildings. The long history of notable houses in the area has now resulted in a number of heritage listed properties, which add to Highgate Hill’s charm and history.
HIGHGATE HILL LIFESTYLE
Highgate Hill is fortunate to fall in the catchment area for West End State School. West End SS is a very well-respect primary school that prides itself on its strong focus on diversity and the arts. It offers a variety of languages for children to learn (including, but not limited to, Chinese, Japanese, French and Greek). If your children are a little older, Highgate Hill is in the Brisbane State High School catchment area, arguably one of the best public high schools in all of Brisbane. If you prefer private, it’s also just across the river from private schools, including Brisbane Boys’ College and St Ignatius.
Highgate Hill is also advantageously positioned for access to a number of tertiary education campuses. If you’re interested in a course a TAFE Queensland’s South Bank campus, or Griffith University’s Film School or South Bank campus, you’ll be able to get to classes without even crossing the river. If you’re willing to travel a little further, you’re also just a stone’s throw away from the University of Queensland’s St Lucia campuses, specifically the Riverside campus, the Faculty of Business, Economics and Law and also the UQ Business School. Highgate Hill’s proximity to not only solid education options but also a vibrant arts culture community allows you to indulge in a more balanced lifestyle.
If your focus isn’t on children or education, Highgate Hill still has plenty to offer. You’re within cycling distance of West End’s Davies Park organic market, which runs every Saturday. It’s also on the Brisbane River loop cycling track, and if you prefer a longer ride, you can take the track west to follow the river along West End’s Orleigh Park (where you can hear the native birds singing in the morning), or head south towards Dutton Park and ride along the river through Fairfield. If you prefer a walk, Highgate Hill is a beautiful place to just wander and get into the corners and alleys you don’t normally see if you’re moving at speed. You’ll find tiny strips of shops, secret laneways and the beautiful old buildings. While Highgate Hill doesn’t have any gyms of its own, it’s conveniently close to the many gyms that pepper West End and South Bank.
If your best friend is four-legged, there are two dog parks in the local area: the Brydon Street Park and Paradise Park. You’re also located close to the dog parks in Dutton Park, of which there are three quite close to each other. With a solid rotation, neither you nor your furry friends need to get bored with the scenery.
WHAT TO DO IN HIGHGATE HILL
Apart from being a beautiful historical suburb, Highgate Hill is very well known for its proximity to a wide variety of high-quality restaurants and cafes. With a population of just under 6000 people Highgate Hill feels more like a small country town than an inner-city suburb. The locals are friendly, and the native vegetation means that Australian native animals thrive in the area as well. Who doesn’t want to see frogs in the wild while walking home from dinner?
Highgate Hill is also next door to West End, which is famous for its quirky cafes and restaurants, and its bohemian atmosphere. From fun recycled clothing to local microbreweries, the West End is a charming collective of some of the most creative people and artists in Brisbane. The West End street art can also lead you through Fish Lane to Southbank, where you can visit the three art galleries along the river. Southbank is also home to Musgrave Park, one of the largest parks in Brisbane and home to many community events, including the annual Greek festival and local NAIDOC celebrations.
If yours is the house that visiting friends and family come to when you’re in town, nearby Dutton Park hosts a number of fun, tourist friendly tours such as the Boggo Road Gaol Ghost Tour and the Southbank Cemetery Ghost Tour. If you prefer something a little more sedate (and possibly less macabre!), you can always head up for a picnic at the Highgate Hill lookout, or go on one of the many river cruises that Brisbane has on offer. Of course, if you’re looking for an excuse to stay inside, Highgate Hill is close to the West End’s three bookstores, as well as the plethora of book shops located in Southbank. It’s also close to the West End library, as well as the many university libraries across the river in St Lucia. There needn’t be a dull moment, but if you’re looking for a quiet coffee and a day in, there are far worse places to do it than in beautiful Highgate Hill.
While on the surface there may not be as much to do in Highgate Hill compared to its neighbours, what it does provide is a respite from the buzz and activity of the adjacent suburbs, providing a quiet place to relax and soak in the views of the river. When you’re so close to everything that Brisbane has to offer, why would you need to clutter up your own streets with the utility of daily living? With its calm atmosphere, beautiful architecture and proximity to the best features of the area, Highgate Hill remains the dress circle of Brisbane to this day.