There’s a huge number of factors to take into consideration when you’re trying to decide where you want to buy a home, and it’s hard to keep track of them all when you’re looking at a number of completely different suburbs.
The considerate folks at Canstar have recognised this issue, and so we’ve put together this comprehensive guide to the best suburbs to buy in Brisbane for home buyers and property investors. We’ve mainly broken down the city’s best suburbs for home buyers by location; however, we’ve also spotlighted a handful of suburbs based on potential rather than position.
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If you’re unsure about where to buy in Brisbane – whether for your next home or as an investment property – welcome to your one-stop shop for all the information you need!
Data used was sourced from RealEstate.com.au and was current at the time of writing.
Lowest advertised rates for variable home loans
The table below displays a snapshot of variable residential home loan products on Canstar’s database with links to providers’ websites, sorted by the advertised interest rate (lowest to highest). The products and Star Ratings displayed are based on a loan amount of $350,000 at 80% LVR for a property in NSW.
5 suburbs within 5km of the CBD
1. Red Hill
Where: Only 3km from the CBD and named for the steep hills that it’s built on, this suburb is home to both the Brisbane Broncos and a large number of heritage-listed sites. It became part of Brisbane in 1925 when the town of Ithica was amalgamated into the City of Brisbane.
Public Transport: Red Hill has no train station, but is well-serviced by a number of bus routes.
Schools: Red Hill has only one school, Red Hill Special School. It has a number of nearby schools in neighbouring suburbs, including Petrie Terrace State School in Paddington, Kelvin Grove State College in Kelvin Grove, and Ithaca Creek State School in Bardon.
Shopping and Dining: While Red Hill is predominantly residential and has little in the way of retail shopping, the suburb has a rather strong food and drink culture, possessing numerous cafes, restaurants, and one of the best craft bottle shops in Brisbane.
Population: Data from the 2011 census showed that Red Hill had a population of 5,016, of which 48.6% were female and 51.4% were male. The median age of the suburb clocks in at 43 years old, which is 6 years above the national median age.
Median House Price: $825,000
Median Rent: $550/week
— Broadsheet Brisbane (@broadsheet_bris) 22 November 2016
Where: This northern suburb is situated roughly 3km from the CBD, and has been a bit of a late bloomer as far as Brisbane suburbs go. The recent upgrading of Kedron Brook Road has led to the area becoming increasingly popular (and increasingly expensive), along with developing a notable al-fresco dining scene. The suburb is also close to sporting grounds such as Downey Park and Ballymore Stadium.
Schools: The suburb has two schools, Wilston State School and St Columba’s Primary School. It has a small retail area named Wilston Village, and a train station which services the area in terms of public transport.
Population: The suburb is home to a large number of medical professionals due to its proximity to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital. Wilston is on the smaller side, with the 2011 census reporting a population of 3,872, almost completely evenly split between the sexes. It’s also a relatively young suburb, having a median age of 35 years old, 2 years below the national median age.
Median House Price: $1,100,000
Median Rent: $595/week
3. East Brisbane
Where: This rather aptly named suburb is about 2.5km east of Brisbane’s heart. With the Brisbane River on its north side and the Gabba on its west side, it’s definitely not bad as far as location goes.
Public Transport: The suburb is well-serviced by a number of bus routes and the CityCat, which leaves from Mowbray Park. East Brisbanites can also choose to walk a short distance to the Wooloongabba bus station.
Shopping and Dining: The suburb is heavily residential, but has pockets of small businesses, and plenty in the way of food and drink (especially of the sweet variety).
Population: Data from the 2011 census indicates that East Brisbane attracts youth – the median age of the suburb clocked in 6 years under the median age at 31. It is also more multicultural than the average suburb; only 61.3% of East Brisbane residents were born in Australia, compared to the national average of 69.8%.
Median House Price: $850,000
Median Rent: $560/week
— Concrete Playground (@concreteplay) 26 July 2016
4. New Farm
Where: Possibly one of the hippest suburbs in Brisbane at the moment, New Farm is also one of the city’s oldest suburbs, and its most densely populated, with approximately 5,862 people per square kilometre. Of course, “hip” does not come cheaply.
Housing Types: New Farm is notable for having a rather unusual blend of housing types, with a mix of 19th Century colonial homes, 20th Century traditional Queenslanders, and modern architectural hybrids. A recent boom in apartment and unit housing has boosted the number of apartments and units to over 70% of New Farm’s dwellings, which has in turn led to increased demand for detached housing.
Shopping and Dining: It is chock full of heritage-listed sites, dining experiences of both the high and trendy varieties, and the popular spot that is the eponymous New Farm Park. The park has been used as a setting for scenes from several films, including Fool’s Gold, All My Friends Are Leaving Brisbane, and Jucy.
— Quest Newspapers (@QuestNewspapers) 15 November 2016
Population: With a population of 11,330 as of the 2011 census, New Farm is definitely not a small place.
Median House Price: $1,737,500
Median Rent: $750/week
5. Kelvin Grove
Where: Red Hill’s younger (and more academic) neighbour, Kelvin Grove is named after Kelvingrove Park in Glasgow, Scotland. It is home to one of QUT’s campuses (the others being in the CBD at the Botanic Gardens and out at Caboolture), and Queensland’s second-largest theatre company, La Boite Theatre Company.
Shopping and Dining: The Kelvin Grove Urban Village is the heart of the suburb, housing several cafes along with restaurants and a handful of apartment buildings. The Village also plays host to the Kelvin Grove markets every Saturday morning, which are attended both by locals and residents of further-flung suburbs. Due to the Kelvin Grove campus being the home of QUT’s creative faculties, Kelvin Grove residents are frequently treated to free arts exhibitions, and music or theatre performances!
Median House Price: $801,500
Median Rent: $500/week
— Rosanna Ryan (@rosieryan) 6 September 2016
5 suburbs on the North Side
6. Everton Park
Where: Home to the original Charlie’s Fruit Market (before its viral expansion to every other corner of Brisbane), this northern suburb has become quite popular lately. This due largely to the presence of Charlie’s Fruit Market, Charlie’s Raw Squeeze, and Veganyumm, but also due to Everton’s proximity to other popular inner-north suburbs such as Ashgrove. Everton Park is coming into its own as a more affordable option for inner-north living, one that offers just as much in the way of variety and vibrancy as its pricier siblings.
Schools: Everton Park is becoming an attractive suburb for families who want peaceful suburban living without being too far out. The suburb is home to a number of schools (both public and private), and child-friendly cafés such as The Alley are the stuff of dreams for socially active parents.
Population: As of 2011, the suburb had a population of 8,325, of which 51.2% and 48.8% were female and male respectively. The suburb’s median age was 37, the same as the national median age. The suburb has a higher proportion of Australian-born residents than most, with 77.5% Australian-born residents versus the national average of 69.8%.
Median House Price: $585,000
Median Rent: $450/week
— Concrete Playground (@concreteplay) 27 August 2016
Where: While it’s one of the more industrial suburbs on Brisbane’s north side, Banyo is still a solid option for those looking to buy a Brisbane home. It neighbours Nudgee, which means that Nudgee Beach is within spitting distance.
Public Transport: You won’t be hard-pressed making your way from Banyo to most places in Brisbane, as Banyo connects to the Gateway Motorway among other main roads, making driving to any destination a breeze. If you don’t have a car, on the other hand, Banyo may be more of a stretch.
Shopping and Dining: Its industrial nature means that Banyo has a little less in the way of exciting café/restaurant culture than other parts of Brisbane, but having Nudgee Beach nearby, coupled with rather low median prices, definitely makes it appealing in its own way. After all, not every prospective buyer is after trendy cafes and inner city living!
Population: The suburb is on the smaller side in terms of population, with the 2011 census reporting a total of 5,607 Banyo residents. This may be due to Banyo’s increasingly industrial nature, spurred by the suburb’s proximity to both Brisbane Airport and the Port of Brisbane.
Median House Price: $533,750
Median Rent: $430/week
— Jacob Anson (@jakeanson) 26 September 2016
8. Bald Hills
Where: Have you ever fancied living in the northernmost point of somewhere? If so, than Bald Hills might be for you, being the northernmost suburb in the city of Brisbane.
Bald Hill is home to a number of heritage-listed sites, the Guide Dogs breeding and training centre for the Blind Association of Queensland, and the Bald Hills Radiator, a 198m-tall radio transmission tower owned by the ABC.
Public Transport: The area is serviced by both a train station and a number of bus routes, is crossed by both Gympie Road and the northern end of the Gateway Motorway, and is situated near the southern end of the Bruce Highway. The long and short of it all is Bald Hill residents don’t have a hard time getting out and about.
Schools: The suburb has two schools: a public primary school, and a private school that covers Prep to Year 12. The public school opened its doors in 1866, which makes it the fourth-oldest school in Queensland.
Population: It’s a rather small place, with a population of only 5,965 as of 2011. Combined with the fact that the suburb is almost entirely residential, you’ve got yourself a small, quiet place to settle down in.
Median House Price: $415,000
Median Rent: $395/week
Source: The Weekend Edition
Bold Coffee is one of Bald Hill’s few cafes; the suburb goes for quality over quantity.
9. Gordon Park
This suburb’s claim to fame is the fact that it’s currently the smallest suburb within Brisbane City Council.
Housing Types: The properties of Gordon Park are predominantly standalone houses (65%), and units account for a further 28%. Many of Gordon Park’s standalone houses are the high-set Queenslanders that the suburb is known for.
Shopping and Dining: Gordon Park is sadly one of the few suburbs in Brisbane to be completely bereft of a shopping centre or major businesses.
Population: A slightly unusual fact about Gordon Park, according to www.realestate.com.au, is that the suburb’s largest demographic is independent youth, who make up 18.5% of the suburb’s population. The 2011 census clocked the population at 4,015, of which 50.7% were female and 49.3% were male. The median age of the population was 33 years old, 4 years below the Australian median of 37.
Median House Price: $737,500
Median Rent: $528/week
Where: Originally a farming district, now a culturally vibrant and family-oriented community… Despite the fact that it may be the only suburb in Australia to have a virus named after it, Hendra seems like a truly lovely place to live, especially for families. It’s roughly 6km out from the CBD, which is just far out enough to provide suburban peace and quiet, but close enough for convenience.
Shopping and Dining: Hendra is home to the Doomben Racecourse, a number of heritage-listed sites, and a huge number of restaurants, cafes, and pubs, making it perfect for foodies who are after suburban living.
It’s also home to a certain Brisbane hero you might’ve seen on the news lately!
Median House Price: $910,000
Median Rent: $600/week
— Nine News Brisbane (@9NewsBrisbane) 24 November 2016
5 suburbs on the West Side
Where: Perhaps best known for the Toowong Village shopping centre at the suburb’s centre, Toowong lies at the beginning of Coronation Drive, and is the main gateway to the city for those who reside in the western suburbs. If you’re a west-sider who ventures into the city often, you’ll be well acquainted with High Street, the main road that runs through the urban centre of Toowong and leads onto “Coro Drive” (as it’s called by Brisbanites).
Housing Types: Once you get beyond its urban centre, Toowong offers a huge amount of leafy, suburban living – surprising for an area so close to the city. The residential parts of the suburb are dominated by hills, with little flat land in sight. Situated upon those hills is a mix of medium-density flats and detached houses, with many of the houses being traditional Queenslanders. However, the suburb’s accommodation blend is set for a revamp, with plans well underway to build three 25-storey towers in Toowong.
Shopping and Dining: Toowong is home to some of Brisbane’s most famous and recognisable attractions and institutions. Toowong Village shopping centre is one of the preeminent shopping complexes on the western side of Brisbane, and Toowong also boasts two of Brisbane’s most famous (or maybe infamous) pubs: the Regatta Hotel and the Royal Exchange Hotel. As long as you don’t live close enough to hear the ruckus on student nights, you’ll love living near such historic pieces of Brisbane culture! The suburb is also home to Queensland’s largest cemetery.
Median House Price: $786,000
Median Rent: $540/week
— Charlie Peel (@charliepeeled) 24 October 2016
Where: One of the most city-like suburbs to exist 7km out from the CBD, Indooroopilly boasts both the largest shopping centre on the western side of Brisbane and some of Brisbane’s quietest, leafiest suburban living. It’s the ultimate 2-in-1 when it comes to suburban living, really!
Housing Types: Housing in Indooroopilly was originally a mix of detached houses and medium density apartments. However, the recent $450 million revamp of the shopping centre has gone hand in hand with an increase in pricier, high-density developments in the vicinity of the shopping centre.
Population: The suburb definitely has a population to match the size of their shopping centre; the 2011 census clocked the size of the population at 11,670. And it’s a particularly young one at that, falling 8 years below the Australian median age of 37. According to www.realestate.com.au, the suburb’s largest demographic is independent youth, who comprise 29.8% of Indooroopilly’s population. This may be due to Indooroopilly’s proximity to the University of Queensland’s St Lucia campus (which is the largest UQ campus).
Median House Price: $862,500
Median Rent: $500/week
— Citygreen (@citygreensystem) 13 August 2016
Where: If you fancy living spitting distance from Indooroopilly shops but don’t want the hustle and bustle (and expense) that living in a more urbanised suburb brings, then Kenmore might be a good option for you.
Schools: This suburb is well-serviced in terms of schools, having two public primary schools, a public high school, and a number of private schools.
Shopping and Dining: Kenmore has a strong food presence in its restaurants and cafes, along with two medium-sized shopping complexes, Kenmore Village and Kenmore Plaza, only a kilometre or so apart on Moggill Road. While the suburb has traditionally been slightly lacking when it comes to the trendy cafes and shops that its neighbour Indooroopilly has in spades, it appears to be trying to redress the imbalance somewhat. A number of new restaurants, cafes, and retail stores have been popping up in and around its various shopping complexes.
Population: Kenmore’s population of 8,483 (as of the 2011 census) is slightly older, being 2 years above the national median age of 37. According to www.realestate.com.au, Kenmore’s largest demographic is established couples and families (20.8%), followed by older couples and families (17.2%).
Median House Price: $655,203