Investing on the northern beaches


Expert Advice: Rich Harvey

Property investors are coming back in force attracted by lower interest rates, strong rental returns and a rising market showing positive signs of growth.  Rich Harvey, CEO of is seeing a resurgence in investor inquiries through his buyers agency business that helps home buyers and investors locate, research, appraise and negotiate homes and investment properties.

“We’ve had the busiest start to a year in a long time.  We are seeing incredible numbers at some open houses, multiple offers and more competitive bidding at auction.  We are very much at the early stages of the property growth cycle in Sydney.”

On the Northern Beaches, Harvey believes that the suburbs of Manly Vale, Narraweena, Brookvale, Curl Curl and Collaroy are likely to experience solid uplift over the next few years. By selecting suburbs adjacent to those most in demand, investors can take advantage of the “ripple effect” of capital growth.

Manly Vale is an excellent area with median prices sitting at $1,006,500 for houses and $492,500 for units. With access to beaches and regular buses into the CBD and lifestyle features, it is priced well below the neighbouring suburbs of Manly and Fairlight.  House and unit prices have been relatively flat for some time but the fundamentals are improving.  Shortage of stock is driving prices higher - a situation which will continue indefinitely and which will also drive rental prices higher- which is good news for investors chasing higher yields. With only 22 properties currently listed for sale (on and 15 for rent, it’s no wonder capital growth in imminent.

Another “affordable” market with strong upside is Narraweena. With a median house price of $853,000 and median unit price $599,500, Narraweena is an area that has a strong potential for capital uplift. Current online search results show there are only 2 properties listed and 8 for rent.

“Narraweena has been a “quiet sleeper” suburb for some time, but its proximity to the beaches, good schools and retail precincts of Dee Why and Warringah Mall make it attractive to buyers” said Harvey.

“Brookvale has long been thought of as an industrial suburb but families and investors are seeking out units and houses ripe for renovation and close to Warringah Mall and bus routes” claims Harvey. With a median house price of $1,063,000 and median unit value of $514,500, Residex have predicted this area to grow at an average rate of 8% pa and 5% pa respectively.  Brookvale search results show 35 properties for sale and 9 for lease.

“Investors need to be very selective about which streets are worthwhile buying in as the stigma of the industrial precincts can influence future value enormously” says Harvey.   

Harvey picks Curl Curl as a market with some hidden gems, a great surfing beach and a median house price of $1,512,500 and unit price $743,000. It is predominantly a house market with many large prestige homes with excellent sea and beach views along with more traditional beach homes in the flatter areas around Curl Curl lagoon and the sports fields. Many 1960 and ‘70s homes are ripe for renovation or knock down and rebuild. (Online: only 4 for sale and 4 for lease).

In the mid-priced bracket Harvey picks Collaroy as a suburb for a nice family home with great views in the mid $1ms, which is exceptional value for Sydney.  With a median house price at $1,344,500 and units $535,000.  Property prices here have been stagnant for some time and are now ripe for the picking.   Similarly, units are excellent value for money and should be considered for investment.  (Online shows 35 for sale and 25 for lease).

In a rising market investors and home buyers need to be careful not to let emotions cloud their judgment or get carried away in a bidding war. Harvey claims that using a buyers agent enables his clients to access “off-market” properties, save time and frustration in the searching process and get independent advice on what price to pay.


Median house price

Median Unit price

Predicted growth houses (p.a) in next 8 years

Predicted growth Units (p.a) in next 8 years

Median Yield Rental (Houses)

Rental Yield Median

Manly Vale





















Curl Curl














Source: Residex 2013

Rich Harvey
Managing Director, propertybuyer
This article was written by Rich Harvey, founder and Managing Director of propertybuyer, Sydney & Australia’s most awarded Buyers Agents. Propertybuyer helps property investors and home buyers search and negotiate the right property at the right price, everytime.  For further details please visit or call +61 2 9975 3311 or 1300 655 615.

Click Here to read more Expert Advice articles by Rich Harvey

Disclaimer: while due care is taken, the viewpoints expressed by contributors  do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Your Investment Property.

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