It can take hours to get to work in a capital city, so why not move to a nearby regional area and commute?
Sometimes you might add 20 or 30 minutes to your journey, but pay about half as much for a house, especially in more expensive cities. That house may also include more internal space, a bigger block, plenty of parking and easy access to the beach or bush; all things that you can forget even exist after living for any length of time in a cramped city property.
You might be able to trade a one and a half hour journey in traffic, for a two hour trip on the open road, which can also be less stressful than the stop/start, bumper to bumper nature of driving in congestion.
Towns outside major capitals have been benefiting from an increase in people prepared to make the drive for lifestyle, with properties being snapped up. The trend is being facilitated by improved roads; better car technology (making longer trips more bearable); and evolving attitudes- people are becoming more accepting of longer travel time than ever before.
Modern workplaces are more flexible with hours, while new technology allows employees to work from home or other remote locations. Recent surveys have found that close to 10 per cent of metropolitan workplaces are now making working remotely available to all employees, while 61 per cent say it is available to certain employees.
This flexibility is important for businesses as they seek to retain quality staff in an environment where salaries may not have significantly increased over recent years.
So you could miss peak hour and perhaps only make the commute 3 or 4 days a week. These options were rare 10 years ago, so as Australia follows the lead of countries like the USA, where more companies are doing away with offices, more of us will relocate to where the grass is greener and the air clearer.
So stay tuned and watch this space over the next decade, as the commuting landscape transforms on the back of improvements to infrastructure, workplace evolution and lifestyle-inspired living choices for home buyers.
Tim McIntyre is the senior real estate reporter for the Daily Telegraph and News.com.au.
Over the past decade, he has attained widespread knowledge of Australia’s many unique property markets and is an authority on all things buying, selling and investing.
His commentary appears every Saturday in the Daily Telegraph Real Estate lift out, as well as online at news.com.au.