Recapping on my previous article I mentioned that in Newcastle, as a buyers agent, I prefer to avoid buying properties close to the railway lines due to noise and dust pollution. While they may seem appealing, for a little more it would be better to buy something a street or two further away. If that doesn’t fall within the budget, consider other areas. The location of the property is something you can’t change and a busy train line carrying millions of tonnes of coal each year isn’t something that is going to disappear overnight.
What else should you be wary of in the Newcastle property market? ( in case you aren’t in a position to use a buyers agent of course ) Flood prone land is in abundance in most suburbs of Newcastle and can be very daunting for a would be buyer from outside of Newcastle. Especially if you haven’t spoken to locals in the neighbourhood you are buying within and have a history of what happened during the major flood events that affected the region, namely 1955 and 2007. Some areas have had major upgrades to the stormwater systems since those events and some still regularly flood in heavy rain. As you can see in the image below from the Newcastle City Council website, the majority of the inner suburbs of Newcastle are considered flood prone. This isn’t to say that all these homes will flood in heavy rain. Careful consideration has to be taken when selecting a property in these areas. As a buyers agent with experience on both sides of the transaction, this places me uniquely as I have letter box dropped, door knocked and cold called many of these suburb during my years in sales which has given me invaluable knowledge of the local area.
There are areas I was exposed to during the 2007 Pasha Storm as I was actually stuck in it trying to get home (another story for another day). Some suburbs flooded where I hadn’t though of, like Merewether Street Merewether and McMichael Street Maryville. Areas such as New Lambton around New Lambton South Public School and Hamilton North very hit quite hard. For some time after the storms streets through these suburbs were like construction zones as numerous homes were renovated/repaired after water had inundated them. For some this was a windfall with a flurry of sales in those pockets afterwards. As a buyers agent I can give my clients insight into this on an individual property level by finding out when the renovations were carried or if I actually recall the dwelling having been damaged.
While some areas may not have inundation of the property, they may have water that sits around and makes life inconvenient. For example if the water floods the footpaths, driveways, gutters or backyards. Low lying suburbs such as Carrington regularly experience this in heavy rain. Its also a reminder that why its essential to buy a property with parking, especially if its a suburb where it is common place or street parking is difficult to come by. I have been to open houses where I have had to park on the nearest cross street and walk down a narrow street in pouring rain to inspect a property where the street parking was limited and the property didn’t have parking. Compounded by large puddles that are hard to avoid, you are going find it hard for visitors or even tenants to want to stop by unless they ride a bicycle or moped.
In summary, while flood prone land is prominent in the suburbs of Newcastle, it is not the end of the world and you don’t need to reduce your search to only high set suburbs like Merewether or Adamstown Heights or North Lambton. Look to these suburbs if you are after a suburb, district or coastal view, split level or homes with large amounts of sub floor storage. For more information on buying in Newcastle from one of Newcastle’s best connected property professionals, contact Tiron on 0438502371 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Newcastle Buyers Agent – Flood Map – Courtesy of Newcastle City Council