South Australia Market Update

Quarter 4, 2021

Market Overview

It’s official. 

Adelaide has one of the highest capital growth rates across Australia’s capital cities! 

CoreLogic Change in Dwelling Values

The median dwelling value went up a whopping 23.2% in the last 12 months. That is the highest growth rate Adelaide has experienced in the last 5 years.  

CoreLogic reported that across the Australian capital cities we are experiencing a two-speed market. The pace of growth is easing across Sydney, Melbourne and Perth however conditions across Brisbane and Adelaide housing markets have gained momentum. 

However, don’t panic! Compared to Australia’s other capital cities our median dwelling value ($569,882) still represents much more affordable buying. 

Along with the market setting many records this year. We are also pleased to announce we have set a few of our own.  

We purchased over $121 million dollars worth of property for our clients in 2021. And more importantly, we helped 167 clients achieve their property goals! 

My advice to anyone that is considering sitting back and hoping the Adelaide market will go backwards, don’t! You will be waiting a long time. We expect that strong growth will be a feature of 2022 and beyond. 

So what has Adelaide enjoying this phenomenal growth? There are several contributing factors and I will break down 6 of them. 

Success Factor One

Our affordable median price. 

Interstate investors and interstate relocators who have been priced out of their local markets are well aware that Adelaide offers excellent buying and are scrambling to buy in before our prices continue to rise.  

Capital cities, like Sydney and Melbourne’s hefty median price are seeing people looking around where they can invest their dollars and are quickly seeing that Adelaide offers the whole package on a smaller but cheaper scale and this is driving demand.

Success Factor Two

Continued low levels of stock.  

Throughout the year we have experienced low stock levels, and even though more properties hit the market during the busy Spring season CoreLogic still reported that we were at a 5-year low of total active listing at the end of November. In fact, 32% below the five-year average!   

CoreLogic Total Active Listings

As vendors seem hesitant to place their properties on the market, we saw an increase of off-market properties come across our desk.  One week we saw in excess of 60! As a buyer agent we definitely get made aware of off-market and pre-listing properties more than any individual buyer which is great for our clients.  

Success Factor Three

Continued low interests.   

The RBA has held interest rates at the historic low of 0.10 per cent throughout 2021 and are indicating rates will remain near zero throughout 2022 and to 2024.  

Credit conditions were tightened, with the interest buffer rising from 2.5% to 3.0% in November. This can make it a little more challenging for some buyers to access funds, but low interest rates combined with Adelaide’s affordable housing market just makes us more appealing. 

Success Factor Four

Investors are attracted to our high rental yields coupled with capital growth opportunities.   

Adelaide has some of the lowest vacancy rates in Australia. At the end of Quarter 4 2021, our vacancy rate was at 0.5% and has sat beneath 1% for the whole year.  

It is not uncommon for our investor clients to achieve rental yields around 4.5% to 5% and their properties are typically let after one open and have very little vacancy time. Sometimes they are even let before the ink has dried on the settlement paperwork! 

One word of caution though. A low vacancy rate alone doesn’t make a suburb desirable for an investor. The suburb and location needs to be appealing to tenants and preferable high-quality tenants. 

Success Factor Five

Adelaide’s growing reputation. 

We were a little bit chuffed when Adelaide was named the third most liveable city in the world in the Global Liveability Index 2021. Six of the top ten cities in the March 2021 survey were in New Zealand or Australia, and we were the highest-ranked Australian city. A significant influence over Australia’s and New Zealand’s rankings has been the ability to effectively manage the pandemic and that our tight border controls have allowed residents to live relatively normal lives. The survey rates cities across 5 categories: stability, healthcare, culture & environment, education and infrastructure.   

And we just keep adding feathers to our cap. A pipeline of exciting local jobs for both now and the future have been further secured amid the massive announcement that South Australia will be the site for the nation’s first dedicated space manufacturing hub.  The establishment of the multi-million-dollar Australian Space Park will boost space manufacturing capability and capacity within a purpose-built facility.

Success Factor Six

One of the things I love so much about Adelaide and its surrounding suburbs is there are genuine opportunities for everyone in most budgets. 

Whether you like the sea, the hills or the city. You can have it and maybe you can have two at once! 

There are price options for everyone. If you are a first home buyer or an investor with a smaller budget you can look in suburbs like Ingle Farm or Kilburn, north of Adelaide. For growing families look west of Adelaide suburbs like Edwardstown, Birkenhead (see our suburb review below) and Clarence Gardens. 

And then established inner-city suburbs like Prospect, Norwood and Toorak Gardens are always popular for those seeking homes with larger budgets. 

Really these suburbs are just scraping the surface. I haven’t even mentioned the hip and sunny beachside suburbs or beautiful leafy green suburbs in The Hills! 

Whether your budget is $400,000 or $3 million, there is something for everyone! 

Suburb to Watch

Birkenhead "Harbourside Town"


How many suburbs can boast having a heritage-listed bridge that raises up and down to let boats through! 

Birkenhead is a north-western suburb of Adelaide 14 km from the CBD, on the Lefevre Peninsula. It is a harbourside town on the Port Adelaide River and right next door to popular beachside Semaphore.  


The one square kilometre suburb actually boasts 3 bridges. The Port River Expressway is a 5.5-kilometre freeway that links Port Adelaide and the LeFevre Peninsula to the northern suburbs of Adelaide and major interstate routes and the Tom ‘Diver’ Derrick Bridge, was designed and built to ease traffic congestion.  

Birkenhead is largely a residential suburb with industrial harbourside development on the southern and eastern shores of the suburb.  

The suburb is served by a kindergarten, Le Fevre; a primary school, Lefevre Peninsula Primary School; and the local high school is Lefevre High School, in nearby Semaphore South.  

There is little commercial activity in the small suburb for shops and eateries, but there are plentiful options nearby. South of the  river in historic Port Adelaide and west to Semaphore beach. Both have plenty and offer very different experiences. 

There are multiple transport options. Five different bus routes run through and around the suburb. And it is serviced by Peterhead railway station on the Outer Harbor railway line. The line runs to Outer Harbour at the northern tip of the Lefevre Peninsula or to the CBD. 

There are two small parks in the suburb, one with a playground and both close to the kindergarten. 

There are a lot of older homes on larger blocks and dotted throughout them are more modern builds. There are some really strong opportunities in Birkenhead for First Home Buyers, Families, Professionals and Investors. A great location, where you can commute to town easily or head to the beach. 

Purchase Example

3 Bed | 1 Bath | 3 Cars | 377sqm | Sold for $750,000 November 2021

This immaculate C1910 home is positioned in a beautiful tree-lined street. The home is tastefully renovated throughout and is situated just off the iconic Semaphore Road which is host to many vibrant café’s, restaurants, specialty shops and Semaphore Foreshore. Just a short stroll to the beach and the Port River walking and cycling loop, schools and public transport.

Case Study 

Prestige Buying for Interstate Clients
by Katherine Skinner

by Katherine Skinner


Katherine Skinner began her career in property over a decade ago in Melbourne working in Buyer’s Advocacy and Property Management. Returning to her hometown of Adelaide in 2009, Katherine quickly established a reputation as an exceptionally thorough and diligent practitioner, providing outstanding customer service coupled with a calm and positive attitude while working with some of Adelaide’s most highly regarded agencies. Katherine was named the REISA Buyers Agent of the Year 3 years running, a REIA National Awards Finalist twice, a Women in Real Estate Finalist and is the current South Australia representative for REBAA.

0438 729 631 or email Katherine