Various business activities took me to Sydney last week. It is currently experiencing a growth spurt – in housing, infrastructure, prices and confidence. There are lots of new infrastructure projects on the go as well as numerous high rise apartment towers with their swinging cranes on top like silly hats. For some reason I did not find the traffic as daunting as much as I have in the past. But watch out for parking speeding or minor infringements. Like many major municipalities experiencing budget restraints, an easy prey is to gouge locals and visitors with outrageous fines and charges.
I love the Randwick/Queens Park area where I was staying. Easy access to Centennial Park and the shops of Bondi Junction make it a great location. Unfortunately, it has jumped out of my price bracket these days. I am glad to see these areas like Paddington and Queens Park and others will maintain heritage listings to keep the local character. Otherwise I am happy to see high rise and in-fill development as a lesser evil to urban sprawl. People who do not want to see any change is unrealistic and making cities more liveable involves more high rise, better public transport and dropping the domination of the car.
I also drove up to Avalon and Palm Beach as I had some meetings there. Did you know that we get the most sea-changers to Byron shire coming from either Pittwater or Randwick shires. We really know how to pick the best places. As I was attending a property and home show expo I went to the Olympic Park complex in Homebush for the first time. Unimpressive architecture and mausoleum type sport stadiums with a scattering of old heritage buildings. Not very nice. But the ferry ride back to the city made up for it as it was a perfect day and I was able to sticky-beak at lots of harbour side homes.
One of my work activities was being a vendor’s advocate on a property in Bronte. This is one of the “Hot, Hot” areas of a hot city and I felt very popular with a gaggle of competing agents bending over backwards to get the listing. Byron agents beware – commssions in Sydney are commonly between 1.5-1.8% which is a big difference between our 2.5-3% plus GST. It is possible that all Sydney agents have to do is keep their phones on to make a sale but I predict commission will slowly come down here as well.