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From McMansion to mini mansion: the evolution of the luxury residential market

From McMansion to mini mansion: the evolution of the luxury residential market

Australia boasts some of the most liveable cities in the world, with beautiful landscapes, clean air and a laid back lifestyle. Despite this, recently some mainstream residential markets have cooled, according to the 2018 Knight Frank Wealth Report which shows that a lack of supply pushed the Sydney prime market prices to 10.7%, ahead of Melbourne’s 9.8%.

The report also found the gap between luxury and mainstream price performance widened in both cities. While foreign buyer application fees and stamp duty increases have led to slower rates of annual growth, a strong appetite for luxury residential properties remains.

A leading housing trend becoming increasingly apparent in this buoyant luxury market is the rise of apartment living. The latest ABS Census of Population and Housing showed that more Australians are living in apartments than ever before, particularly in major cities, where people are prioritising access to jobs and local amenities over the traditional Australian Dream of owning a house with a big backyard.

To meet the increasing demand for apartment living, architects are exploring new and innovative designs and features to cater for today and tomorrow’s tenants and owners. This is particularly apparent in premium developments and there are a number of features and trends that we expect to continue to see, including:

  • Glass facades to allow for natural light
  • Grand entrances to evoke a sense of place and enhance the arrival experience
  • Hotel facilities such as concierge services and cellars
  • State-of-the-art health clubs and fitness centres
  • Pools and entertainment areas
  • Resort-style shared spaces such as libraries and gardens
  • Bespoke kitchens, which are the heart and soul of any apartment

Moving forward into 2019 and beyond, we expect the luxury residential market to continue to thrive and innovate. The integration of technology will merge with the trends we are already seeing, as buyers make the move from the large McMansions of the past to the mini mansions of the future.