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Buying a property in Canberra: a complete guide

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property investment Canberra

Yes, the analysis of Canberra's property market is included in our pack

Thinking of investing in real estate in Canberra? You're not alone!

Many people are captivated by Canberra's political significance and dream of owning a contemporary townhouse or a modern city apartment.

Would it be a good investment, though? Are property prices increasing in Canberra? How much does it cost? Should you consider buying in the City Centre or Braddon? What are the property taxes? Where are the best rental yields?

We know the answers.

The BambooRoutes team has done their homework and know this market well. As a matter of fact, we've organized all our findings in a pack. Get it now.

In the lines below, we'll provide you with helpful information.

How is the real estate market in Canberra?

Is the property market showing growth or decline? Let's analyze the latest data and statistics.

Types of properties

In Canberra, there are various types of properties available for sale to suit different preferences and needs.

These include detached houses, townhouses, apartments, and units. Detached houses are standalone properties with their own land, offering more space and privacy.

Townhouses are attached homes, often with multiple levels, providing a balance between space and convenience. Apartments are typically found in multi-story buildings, offering a compact living space with shared facilities.

Units are similar to apartments but are usually part of a smaller complex.

Whether you prefer a spacious house, a low-maintenance townhouse, or a compact apartment, Canberra's property market has a variety of options to meet your requirements.

Buy or rent?

(If you want to live there yourself and not rent it to others)

If Canberra is your city of choice, you might be considering whether it's better to buy a property or opt for renting in this capital city of Australia.

Generally, buying is a better choice than renting in Canberra due to its strong property market and potential for capital gains.

On the flip side, renting offers greater flexibility if that's what you prefer.

Property prices in Canberra

On average, according to the last data from CoreLogic, buying a property in Canberra would cost you around $7,500 per square meter.

Obviously, there are significant differences. An apartment in the city center of Canberra might have a different price per square meter than a suburban house in Belconnen. We actually give you a more detailed breakdown in our pack for buying property in Canberra and in Australia.

To give you some context, it is 2.5 times less than the prices in the center of New York.

Also, housing prices in Canberra are 31% cheaper than in Sydney.

The most expensive neighbourhoods in Canberra are probably Forrest, Yarralumla, and O'Malley, while the cheapest are probably Hume, Charnwood, and Calwell.

Canberra Property Price per Square Meter


First and foremost, we have to acknowledge that Australia is, today, one of the most stable countries in the world. The last Fragile State Index that has been reported for this place is 22.7.

Keep this in view when pondering the viability of buying a property in in Canberra.

Also, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Australia's economy is expected to soar by 8.8% in the coming 5 years, resulting in an average GDP growth rate of 1.8%.

If you want to invest in real estate in Canberra it's a good thing because a growing economy (usually) leads to higher incomes for citizens, enabling them to invest in real estate, which boosts demand and prices for properties.

Also, in Australia, the average GDP per capita has changed by 4.0% over the last 5 years. The growth, although minimal, is still present.

These are cues signaling that property prices in Canberra might go up in 2024 and during the coming years.

Looking for more updated data? We've done a big-picture study to find out if it's a good idea to purchase property in Australia right now.

Buying property in Canberra

Buying real estate in Canberra can be difficult due to the lack of reliable and updated information available throughout the buying process. That's why we have created the pack to buy property in Canberra and in Australia.

Buying process

In our pack, we've laid out all the steps involved in the buying process, including the required documents, taxes to be paid, and guidance on finding properties.

Now, we're giving you a more straightforward version to help you grasp the information more easily.

This is the step-by-step process to purchase a property in Canberra:

  1. Research the Canberra property market and determine your budget.
  2. Obtain a pre-approval for a home loan from a local bank or lender.
  3. Engage a licensed real estate agent familiar with the Canberra market or search online property listings.
  4. Attend property inspections to assess the suitability of properties.
  5. Make an offer through a Sale of Land – Residential Property (ACT) form, specific to Canberra.
  6. Negotiate the price and terms of the contract with the seller.
  7. Sign a Contract for Sale of Land – Residential (ACT) with the seller after reaching an agreement.
  8. Pay the deposit (usually 5-10% of the purchase price) into a trust account.
  9. Conduct necessary inspections, such as building and pest inspections, and review the Land and Property Information (ACT) records.
  10. Finalize your home loan and obtain formal approval from your lender.
  11. Settle the property by paying the balance and Stamp Duty to the ACT Revenue Office.
  12. Attend the settlement meeting to complete the transfer of ownership and receive the keys to your new Canberra property.

Also, if you're not from the country, you might want to check our article on how to buy property as a foreigner in Australia.

Make a profitable investment in Canberra

Better information leads to better decisions. Save time and money. Download our guide.

buying property in Canberra

Where to find a property

Explore these websites to find properties in Canberra:

  • - A comprehensive platform for real estate services, providing property listings, mortgage information, suburb research, and the latest property news.
  • Domain - A property portal offering a wide range of real estate services, including property listings, home loans, new developments, and news updates.
  • Flatmates - Australia's largest share accommodation website, connecting individuals looking for shared homes or flatmates.
  • Allhomes - A real estate website providing various property services, including buying, renting, selling, and commercial properties.
  • Realcommercial - The leading destination for commercial property, offering a wide range of listings, investment opportunities, news, and agency information.

Also, know that we have included contacts of real estate agencies, property lawyers, moving companies, expats communities and more in our pack for buying property in Australia.

What you can get

As mentioned before, the average price per sqm in Canberra is $7,500. A 1-bedroom property of 60 square meters would cost approximately $450,000, and a 2-bedroom property of 85 square meters would cost approximately $638,000.

However, property prices can vary because of their qualities and where they're located.

Property prices in the top areas of Canberra are commonly at a premium. For about $1,820,000, you could get a residence in Yarralumla, but a house in Kingston might be priced at $1,310,000.

Of course, some regions offer more affordability. You could find an apartment in Charnwood for $250,000, or you might encounter an apartment in Ngunnawal priced at $200,000.

We give a more detailed breakdown in our full pack for buying property in Australia.

Risks and pitfalls

Here are the main pitfalls when buying a property in Canberra, Australia:

  • Bushfire risks: Canberra is prone to bushfires, so overlooking the property's proximity to high-risk areas can lead to safety concerns.
  • Seasonal weather impact: Failing to consider the extreme temperature variations and potential flooding may affect property condition and livability.
  • Leasehold land: Some properties are on leasehold land, not freehold, which could have limitations and ongoing costs for buyers.
  • Strata title complexities: Many properties are part of strata complexes, so understanding the rules and fees is essential to avoid future conflicts.
  • Heritage-listed restrictions: Heritage properties have limitations on modifications, which could restrict future development plans.
  • Commute and public transport: Not considering the commute distance to work or the availability of public transport may impact daily life.
  • Energy efficiency: Canberra's climate requires well-insulated properties, overlooking this may lead to higher utility costs.
  • Land constraints: Due to its planned layout, land availability in desirable areas may be limited, leading to higher prices and competition.

We don't want this to happen to you, so we have included a full checklist for your property investment in our pack of documents. Avoid these mistakes and save a lot of money.

real estate Australia

Everything you need to know is included in our Australia Property Pack

Living in Canberra

Living in Canberra is a great choice for those looking to purchase property, as it offers a relaxed lifestyle with plenty of amenities and an abundance of outdoor activities.

Cost of living

The cost of living in Canberra is generally higher than the national average, but is still relatively affordable compared to other large cities in Australia. Living costs in Canberra are largely affected by the city's high wages, which can often offset the higher cost of rent and other living expenses.

Here are some examples to better understand the cost of living in Canberra, Australia:

  • Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the trendy neighborhood of Braddon: $2,300 per month.
  • A meal at a local restaurant with "Kangaroo Steak," a traditional Australian dish: $40.
  • Monthly "MyWay" card for public transportation: $100.
  • Utilities (electricity, water, heating) for a small apartment in Kingston: $140 per month.
  • A cup of "Flat White," a popular Australian coffee style: $4.50.
  • Ticket to the "National Gallery of Australia," a renowned art museum: $20.
  • Monthly membership at a popular fitness chain like "Club Lime": $70.
  • A bottle of "Bundaberg Ginger Beer," a well-known Australian soft drink: $3.

Neighbourhoods and spots

Since we want to explain things clearly, we made a table that shows the neighborhoods in Canberra. For yields, prices and rents, check our property pack.

Neighborhood Description Strengths Weaknesses


The Central Business District (CBD) is the bustling heart of Melbourne, known for its skyscrapers, shopping centers, and cultural attractions.

Excellent public transport, diverse dining options, and numerous entertainment venues.

High living costs, crowded during peak hours, and limited green spaces.


Fitzroy is a trendy inner-city suburb with a bohemian atmosphere, featuring street art, eclectic shops, and a vibrant nightlife.

Artistic and hip vibe, abundant cafes and bars, and close proximity to the city.

Parking challenges, noise levels during weekends, and high demand for housing.

St Kilda

St Kilda is a beachside neighborhood with a lively seaside promenade, offering a mix of beach culture and various entertainment options.

Beautiful beach views, diverse restaurants, and a vibrant arts scene.

Some areas can be touristy, traffic congestion during peak seasons, and limited public transport options.


Richmond is a bustling suburb with a mix of residential and commercial areas, known for its lively street life and diverse food scene.

Abundance of restaurants and cafes, great shopping options, and easy access to public transport.

Heavy traffic at times, limited parking, and higher rent in certain areas.


Carlton is a vibrant area, home to the famous Lygon Street, offering a range of Italian restaurants and cultural attractions like museums and theaters.

Rich cultural heritage, proximity to the University of Melbourne, and beautiful gardens.

Can get crowded during events, limited parking, and higher property prices.

Life in Canberra

Canberra has a strong and diversified economy, with sectors such as government services, education, finance, technology, and tourism. It is home to numerous government departments and agencies, as well as a number of major international and domestic companies.

What expats usually like the most in Canberra is the abundance of outdoor activities, such as bushwalking, mountain biking, and skiing in the nearby Snowy Mountains. They also appreciate the city's cultural attractions, such as the National Gallery of Australia, the National Museum of Australia, and the National Library of Australia.

Regarding safety, the crime rate of Canberra is around 27, which is a very impressive score. Canberra is a safe and peaceful city due to its culture of respect and civic pride.

Access to healthcare in Canberra is very good, with a Healthcare Index of 69. A strong healthcare system and infrastructure will always make a place more attractive, which is positive for real estate.

Finally, it is worth noting that the Australian National University ranks among the top 70 universities in the world.

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Renting out in Canberra

This section is for those who are looking to purchase a property not to live in themselves, but to rent it out and make an income from the rental.


Tenant Profiles in Canberra

According to the data reported by Wikipedia, the home ownership rate in Australia is 66%, which is average.

It means that, if you decide to buy and rent out in Canberra, there will be a good number of people who can become your potential tenants.

If you decide to buy and rent out to long-term tenants, you should target young professionals, families, university students, and foreign diplomats in Canberra. Additionally, you can also target short-term tenants such as temporary workers, traveling professionals, and tourists.

Here is a little summary table we've made for you.

Property type and area Profiles of potential tenants What they are looking for Expected monthly rent in $

Apartment in City Centre

Professionals, students

Central location, access to amenities

$1800 - $3000

House in Yarralumla

Families, diplomats

Leafy suburb, embassies, lake views

$3500 - $6000

Unit in Kingston

Young professionals, couples

Trendy cafes, proximity to foreshore

$2200 - $3500

Townhouse in Belconnen

Families, students

Nearby universities, shopping centers

$2800 - $4500

Apartment in Braddon

Youthful professionals, artists

Cafes, artsy scene, urban living

$2000 - $3500

House in Woden Valley

Families, government workers

Quiet suburban life, accessibility

$2800 - $5000

Unit in Gungahlin

Young families, commuters

Developing area, modern amenities

$2000 - $3500

Rental yields

Nowadays, rental yields in Canberra are usually below 5%. It's not much. A good rental yield is usually around 7% or higher. Maybe, you knew it already.

The best rental yields in Canberra can be found in properties located close to public transport, shopping centres and other amenities. This is because they are in high demand from tenants who appreciate the convenience of living close to these facilities.

For further explanation and a more detailed breakdown, you can check the reports and analyses we have made.


You could also decide to rent short-term to professionals and students relocating to Canberra for work or study, as well as tourists visiting the city. Short-term rental could also be attractive to families visiting Canberra for events or conferences.

If you decide to go with that option, look for properties in the city centre, such as Kingston, Barton, Braddon or Civic, as they are close to many attractions and amenities and have high demand for short-term tenants. Alternatively, properties in the inner south suburbs like Griffith, Red Hill, Kingston and Manuka are also popular for short-term rentals.

Currently, there are approximately 1,805 active Airbnb listings in Canberra, reflecting a highly dynamic and bustling short-term rental market. The average daily rate stands around $149, which is quite high.

You have the opportunity to generate a nice additional income stream then. According to online testimonials and analytics platform like AirDNA, Guesty and Inside Airbnb, people who offer short-term rentals in Canberra can make around $2400 per month. Also, the average occupancy rate is estimated at 75%.

Is it worth buying real estate in Canberra then?

Buying property in Canberra can be a fantastic investment choice if you're looking for long-term stability and potential for solid returns. The city's real estate market is robust, with steady price growth over the years.

With a thriving economy, strong job market, and high wages, Canberra attracts a diverse pool of potential tenants, making it relatively easy to find renters. Additionally, the safety and quality of life in Canberra are top-notch, further enhancing its appeal as a place to live and invest.

Moreover, if you're open to short-term rentals, you can tap into the bustling market in central areas like Kingston and Braddon, potentially earning a handsome additional income.

However, it's not all sunshine and roses. Canberra's property market may not suit everyone. The upfront costs of buying property in the city can be steep, particularly if you're eyeing premium neighborhoods.

If flexibility and mobility are crucial for you, renting might be the better option, as owning property involves a long-term commitment. Furthermore, like any investment, there are risks involved. Factors such as property type, location, and unforeseen events like natural disasters can impact your investment. So, while Canberra offers many opportunities, it's essential to weigh the pros and cons carefully and tailor your decision to your unique circumstances and goals.

Make sure you understand the real estate market in Canberra

Don't rush into buying the wrong property in Australia. Sit, relax and read our guide to avoid costly mistakes and make the best investment possible.

real estate market Canberra

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and does not imply endorsement or advice. While we strive for accuracy, we do not guarantee the completeness or reliability of the information, including text, images, links, or other elements in this material. Following the content and analyses presented here does not assure specific outcomes. For guidance tailored to your individual circumstances, it is recommended to consult with a professional, such as a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor.