Selling points: Ellenbrook is a designated regional centre under the town planning scheme and has a range of facilities and services to meet the needs of the 22,000 population. These includes the 11 primary and secondary schools currently operating, with more planned. The population grows by approximately 1,500-2,000 people each year and as such the developers are continually adding value to the area, including playgrounds, sporting precincts and major shopping centres.
The other major point is the suburb was never intended to be a dormitory suburb, whereby residents drive to their employment, but rather the creation of 5,000 jobs is planned. Recently Masters Hardware has just opened, employing 350 local residents. The suburb also has more than 100 shops, including four major retailers.
Rental vacancy rates are almost zero as many of the people who buy land and build a house, rent while doing so.
Most sought after properties: Typically, Perth families still love the four by two home on a traditional size lot. The average size of lot has reduced over the past three-five years due to affordability and we are now seeing a real shift to three by two homes. The investor activity since the start of 2012 reflects this trend.
Most common properties: Ellenbrook has seven villages, each with a different theme, and this is reflected in the design of the homes and streetscape. The latest village draws on the natural wetlands as a backdrop, with native front landscaping in all homes and public playgrounds using natural elements. Traditional four by two homes still characterise the suburb.
Top amenities: The 11 primary and secondary schools currently operating offer shared use facilities with the local residents, such as sporting ovals and the town library. Ellenbrook has more than 100 sporting, recreational and community groups currently operating. Regional playing fields, including club rooms and a sport and recreation centre, are currently under construction.
Local industry and business: Major employers include Coles, Woolworths, Big W, Dick Smith and, now recently, Masters Hardware. This is in addition to the building activity, which sees some 300 new homes under construction each year.
Recent changes: As one of the largest developments in Australia, the suburb changes every month. In the past 10 years, a major new town centre has emerged, with over 30,000 sqm of retail facilities. The population has grown by over 12,000 in this period. Two new high schools and three primary schools have also opened in this period.
Best streets: Buyers have the opportunity to buy existing or new and can choose between seven villages, each with their own character. Each village has a dress circle, or premium, precinct that tends to overlook parks or lakes or be in an elevated position. These dress circle areas have proven to hold their values over time.
The latest village Lexia is offering excellent value. With home building undergoing a challenging time in recent years, homebuilders are offering great incentives to purchase now. These incentives are likely to disappear in the next three months as the upturn becomes evident.
Public transport: There are a number of bus routes that expand as the suburb grows. Currently buses leave every 15 minutes to the Morley interchange. A full review by the State Government is underway with planning for light rail services and in the immediate term, a rapid bus system, to the Bassendean train station.
Main arteries: Ellenbrook is easily accessible to the idyllic Swan Valley wine region, literally at the end of Gnangara Road. The airport is only 18 minutes away utilising Reid and Tonkin Highways, which suits many of the FIFO workers purchasing in the area. Major employment hubs in Malaga and Wangara are only 15 minutes away and Hillarys Beach is in a direct line along Hepburn Avenue taking just under 30 minutes.