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There’s plenty of doom and gloom about the skyrocketing of property prices – a million dollars in Australia’s biggest cities doesn’t necessarily go that far any more. So instead we took up the challenge to find Australia’s cheapest home.
The rules are simple – it has to be identifiable as a house, not a caravan or a block of land with a shed (or a houseboat, or a commercial building) – and it has to have a price on it somewhere.
There’s a range of very affordable properties available, in a variety of locations and usually not necessarily in great condition – but they are cheap, and if you’re a bit handy they could be fixed up. Take your pick!
The state of Tasmania has a handful of properties coming in at under $50,000, with a handful in Rosebery on the west coast. An example is this $44,000 home aimed at would-be renovators on a 710-square-metre block, or this $47,000 home with mountain views.
Neither town has a huge population, but Queenstown’s historic features including tours and a museum do attract tourists. It’s about a three-and-a-half hour drive from Launceston, or a five-hour drive from Hobart.
127 Ryan Lane, Broken Hill, is advertised at $25,000.
New South Wales
Initially there doesn’t seem to be much for less than $50,000 in the freestanding house market in NSW – although there are several caravan sites, and a waterfall kiosk. But you can strike gold at Broken Hill, where this derelict home is advertised for $25,000 with the accurate heading: “ONE WORD – CHEAP!”.
There are some other options in the area, in varying condition. Closer to the coast – which wouldn’t be hard, really – Coonamble has this fixer-upper on the market for $30,000, a two-bedroom house with fruit trees and grapevines in the yard.
Gulargambone, three hours north of Mudgee, has an older-style cottage reduced to $52,500, and country-music-capital Tamworth has a “renovate or detonate” two-bedder for sale for $89,000. Once the price edges above $100,000 there is at least one option in Dorrigo.
Does this count as a house? The listing describes it as “no country estate but it is a quarter-acre block with a shack of sorts” in the Wimmera region – in Brim, a town that recently made the news for its silo art works. At $24,999 it’s the cheapest structure on the market that houses a fireplace, kitchen and bathroom – of sorts.
Nearby Birchip has a handful of houses for less than $50,000, such as this “project” listed at $48,000 and a cottage in need of renovation at $49,000. Further west, Jeparit has this “ideal project for the capable renovator” at $45,000.
Between $50,000 and $100,000 your options increase considerably, particularly in west and north-western Victoria – $75,000 or $85,000 in Casterton, $59,000 in Warracknabeal, $95,000 to $125,000 in Tempy, and a cute, retro renovator’s special in Hamilton for $95,000.
Queensland’s winner is this two-bedroom home at Blackall in the central west, for sale for $30,000.
A pleasant surprise, though, is this $45,000 two-bedroom Queenslander in Collinsvillle, three hours south of Townsville, which has stained-glass windows and cheerful pink walls, along with solar power on a 1012-square-metre block.
At a similar price point is this five-bedroom home with some timber flooring and pressed ceilings in Aramac, a grazing town in the Barcaldine Region in central Queensland, which is also priced at $45,000. Alternatively you can check out this two-bedroom cottage in outback Muttaburra for $48,000; or this Mitchell home for $60,000.
Home to a lot of mining allotments, South Australia’s cheapest may or may not be a dugout in Cooper Pedy – depending on whether you count a dugout as a house, really. It’s had a $35,000 price adjustment down to $25,000.
In terms of free-standing, above-ground houses, this home is for sale for $40,000 in Lock in the Eyre Peninsula, about an hour-and-a-half north of Port Lincoln. It’s close to the local school and church, and comes with airconditioning.
A little bit cheaper is a three-bedder that “‘needs upgrading” in Port Pirie West, two-and-a-half hours north of Adelaide, which is listed at $35,000.
Norseman, 726 kilometres east of Perth at the start of the Eyre highway, has several sub-$50,000 properties including this three-bedder on Prinsep Street, listed at $39,000. A bit further up the road there’s also number 59 Prinsep Street, advertised at $29,000+ but now under offer. Or try 15 Johns Street, a two-bedder with a modern kitchen offered up at $45,000.
If you’d prefer something a bit brighter, try 33 Mildura Street, which at $49,500 is “probably the pinkest property on the market today“. Alternatively if you want to stick with the colours but find something a bit closer, only 181 kilometres from Perth you can pick up this Shield Street, Tammin home for $55,000