24 October 2018

Australia’s Dream Home in 2018: ‘Scandinavian-style with luxury kitchens and bathrooms, no pool or spare bedroom, in a pet-friendly neighbourhood’

  • New HSBC survey reveals modern prototype of the Great Australian Dream
  • Four in five Aussies will take nice views over a pool any day (82% vs 18%)
  • The hills hoist is here to stay, with 57% preferring it over a balcony
  • Almost three in four (72%) prefer one storey over a two storey dwelling
  • Choosing pets over kids: 69 per cent would prefer pet-friendly accommodation to living in a school catchment zone

The property boom has failed to deter people from dreaming of their ideal residence, with a new HSBC surveyi revealing that the concept of the Great Australian Dream Home is very much alive in 2018 – with a couple of modern tweaks. While Australians might still aspire to a single-storeyii freestanding house with a backyard, they want to stamp their individuality on it and no longer see poolsiii, spare bedroomsiv or bathtubsv as vital features.

Respondents to the HSBC survey said that their perfect home would have a sense of luxury, especially Scandinavian in stylevi, with high tech amenities (61%)vii, a large modern kitchenviii, marble bathroomsix, entertaining areasx and walk-in wardrobesxi. Aussies still want some traditional features, with barbecues and Hills Hoists popular with the majority of people (81%xii and 57%xiii, respectively).

One in four Australians (27%) are not proud of their current homes, fuelling their desire to create their ideal abode. However, many do not yet feel able to realise their dreams – citing money, work and family commitments as the key barriers.

Nearly four out of five people would choose a large modern kitchen over proximity to popular cafés. And even the traditional shed is no longer in vogue with many men, who now hanker more for wine fridges and cellars.

Animals also play an increasingly important role in our dream homes. When given a choice between purchasing in a pet-friendly area or a preferred school catchment, two-thirds (69%) prioritised their pets over children (31%). One-quarter of Australians (26%) said the pet they had (or wanted) influenced their choice of housing.

HSBC’s Great Australian Dream Home survey of 2,000 people investigated Australian’s attitudes towards all aspects of home ownership, including their aspirations for their ideal homes and how they plan to achieve their dreams.

The study is part of HSBC’s annual Beyond the Bricks campaign which looks at home-buying habits and attitudes across the world.

Independent social researcher and futurist, Mark McCrindle, says: “This research shows that the great Australian dream is embedded deep in the national psyche. Our homes are more than our abodes – they express our identity, highlight our aspirations, facilitate our lifestyle and are the hub of the priorities of family and friends.”

Creating the dream home

Australians consistently dream about changes they would make to their current home. The most commonly needed renovations are new bathrooms (25%) ranked this as their top priority) and new kitchens (20%). Less than 1 in 10 (8%) said adding an extension was their most needed renovation.

While money may constrain some of their bolder ambitions, Australians are still very willing to spend money on personalising their homes, spending an average of $582 a year on home décor and $897 on fittings and fixtures. They also feel very little guilt about purchasing unnecessary or frivolous items that help them stamp their unique style on their propertiesxiv.

Alice Del Vecchio, Head of Mortgages at HSBC Australia, said Australians are as eager as ever to create their dream home and the recent softening in property prices and historic low rates may make it more attainable.

“Our customers continue to pursue their dream homes but are less eager to keep up with the neighbours and instead more determined to create a unique residence that reflects their personalities and lifestyle.”

“Our current home loan rate at HSBC is one of the lowest rates on the market, which means whether our customers are looking to get on the property ladder, considering a second investment property, or indeed wanting to crack on with those renovations, we can help Aussies realise their unique ambitions,” Ms Del Vecchio said.

Realising your individual home ambitions

Whatever your Great Australian Dream Home ambition is, HSBC can help. Our home loan rate of just 3.59% p.a *Conditions Apply (for owner occupied loans paying principal and interest) means you’re in a position to go out and find a property that’s a little more you.

Contact our local mortgage experts who specialise in owner-occupied and investment loans, and who can also help with your broader financial needs. You can enquire in-branch, over the phone on 1300 694 722, online at www.hsbc.com.au  or through broker partners Aussie, Mortgage Choice, or Smartline.

The Great Australian Dream Home key findings:

Current home, household layout and usage

  • A free-standing house is the most common type of dwelling (71%)
  • The most common number of bedrooms is 3 (42%)
  • The most popular front door colour is white (31%)
  • 39% have two car spaces – with 47% typically having less than two cars parked there
  • When an extra bedroom is solely used as a guest bedroom, 62% are slept in less often than once a month
  • Even when extra bedroom is designated as a home office or other living space, only 56% are used daily
  • Given a choice Aussies will take the garage over the spare room (70% vs 30%)
  • Three quarters of people (77%) inspected the home in daylight and 58% compared price to other similar properties in area. Only 19% saw it at night-time, only 14% met the neighbours, only 13% saw it in different types of weather and only 11% looked up local crime reports

House pride and expenditure

  • One in four (27%) are not proud of their home and do not feel it reflects well on them
  • Level of pride is higher among those living in Queensland (7.8), those aged over 50 (7.8), and owners (7.7) (rating out of 10)
  • The location of homes is aligned to where family and friends live
  • Most would love to have greater entertaining space, and would upgrade the kitchen and bathrooms
  • Very few see their current abode as being their ‘forever’ home, and even further removed from their dream home
  • Despite spending an average of $582 a year on home décor and $897 a year on fittings and fixtures, Australians claim to have a low level of guilt about (average score 2.7) purchasing unnecessary or frivolous items for their houses
  • Under 40s feel guiltier for purchasing unnecessary or frivolous items for their houses (3.7)

Ideal home

  • The common themes across the ideal home are: open plan; well situated – but this is split between a coastal outlook and urban environment; three or more bedrooms; wooden floorboards or tiles; open fire places; designer kitchens and bathrooms; entertaining areas – both indoors and outdoors, as well as both parent and children retreats; overarching style preferences vary from Scandi to industrial, from Hamptons to tropical oasis and from contemporary to old world charm; and would have a sense of luxury
  • Men in particular, have a desire for the ultimate man cave – at the very least wine fridges and cellars
  • Entertaining areas – both indoors and outdoors – as well as both parent and children retreats are desirable

When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose:

Master bedroom ensuite 91% over a Powder room 9%
Live near a park 89% over a Live near a gym 11%
Backyard 83% over a Rooftop terrace 17%
Nice views 82% over a Pool 18%
BBQ 81% over a Outdoor pizza oven 19%
Large modern kitchen 79% over a Live near popular cafes 21%
Have a car space 75% over a Live near a train station 25%
Own laundry 73% over a Dishwasher 27%
Walk-in wardrobe 72% over a Butler's pantry 28%
One story 72% over a Two story 28%
NBN 71% over a Cable TV 29%
Renovated kitchen but un-renovated bathroom 71% over a Renovated bathroom but un-renovated kitchen 29%
A garage but no spare bedroom 70% over a A spare bedroom but no garage 30%
Pet-friendly accommodation 69% over a Preferred school catchment zone 31%
Open plan living 69% over a Separated living / dining area 31%
Wooden floorboards / tiles 69% over a Carpet 31%
Backyard 67% over a Veranda 33%
Walk-in shower (wet room) 66% over a Bathtub 34%
No pool 66% over a With pool 34%
Scandi interior design 63% over a Industrial chic interior design 37%
Home office 63% over a Media / gaming room 37%
Breakfast bar 62% over a Outdoor bar 38%
Marble in kitchen / bathroom 61% over a Subway tiles in kitchen / bathroom 39%
High-tech amenities 61% over a Period features 39%
Hills Hoist clothesline 57% over a Balcony 43%
A back yard but no spare bedroom 57% over a A spare bedroom but no back yard 43%

The Great Australian Dream Home key findings:

Renovations

  • Aussies consistently dream about what changes they would make to their current home:
    • Greater entertaining spaces
    • Upgrade the kitchen (20%) and bathrooms (25%)
    • Increase the storage
    • Move to a larger house
  • They reveal money holds them back from achieving their dream home – so in the meantime they personalise their home with their choice of furnishings
  • Given a choice many Aussies would also relocate – but feel tied to current location due to work and family commitments, as well as wanting to be close to friends

Neighbours

  • Only 14% of Australians met the neighbours prior to moving in
  • 21% consider their neighbours to be friends, 53% occasionally chat with them, 19% ‘know by sight’, and 7% don’t know them at all
  • People who are unsatisfied with their current home are less likely to see them as friends (8%) and chat less with them (45%) – with a higher proportion (14%) saying they would not know them if they fell over them
  • People over 50 (27%) and owners (23%) are more likely to consider their neighbours as friends
  • 55% of the respondents have no issue with their neighbours
  • The key issue with neighbours is the dog barking (19%) followed by parking issues (13%), and night noises
  • People under 40 are more likely to complain about noise (night-time noise 16% / daytime noise 12% / domestics or loud arguments 10% / screaming children 12%)
  • People that are unsatisfied with their current home complain significantly more about their neighbours on almost all issues – with the proportion of those having no issue dropping to 37%

Other occupants

  • Two thirds (67%) of Australians share their home with uninvited occupants – with this rising to 79% among Queenslanders
  • The most common of these are spiders, cockroaches, mice, and possums
  • 3% of Australians claim to share their home with a ghost
  • 1% claim to share their home with a with a squatter
  • Mention was also made of girlfriends, mothers-in-law, and other family members also being uninvited or unexpected occupants

Pets

  • When given a choice between a pet friendly home or a home in a preferred school catchment – two thirds (69%) will prioritise a pet friendly location
  • 63% of Australians say that pets had no influence on their choice of home, 11% say their home influenced their choice of pet, and 26% say their pet influenced their choice of house
  • Among the 26% who claim their choice of home was influenced by their pets, 57% rate the influence as high (7 to 10 out of 10), with one in four (25%) rating it as very high (9 or 10 out of 10)
  • Females (30%) and under 40s (31%) are more likely to be influenced by their pets when choosing a home
  • 63% of Australians agree (rate as 7 to 10 out of 10 / average rating 6.9) with the statement that “Having a pet limits your choice of housing options” (average rating 6.9). Agreement is higher in Queensland (7.2) and renters (7.6)
  • 42% of Australians agree (rate as 7 to 10 out of 10 / average rating 5.6) that “Keeping a cat or dog in an apartment is cruel” – with this higher among people that haven’t been influenced by their pets (6.0), males (5.8), over 50s (5.9), and owners (5.9)
  • However, only 31% of Australians feel that “Pets should not be allowed in rental properties” (rate as 7 to 10 out of 10 / average rating 4.5), with agreement higher among people that haven’t been influenced by their pets (5.3), males (4.9), over 50 (4.7) and owners (5.1)

MEDIA ENQUIRIES

Ashleigh Baines
+612 9255 2385 / +614 669 394 08
ashleigh.baines@hsbc.com.au

David Matthews
+61 2 9006 5682 / +614 23 8974 58
david1.matthews@hsbc.com.au


HSBC BANK AUSTRALIA

In Australia, the HSBC Group offers an extensive range of financial services through a network of 44 branches and offices. These services include retail and commercial banking, trade finance, treasury and financial markets, payments and cash management and securities custody. Principal HSBC Group members operating in Australia include HSBC Bank Australia Limited (ABN 48 006 434 162 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 232595) and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (ABN 65 117 925 970 and AFSL 301737).


i 'The Great Australian Dream Home' – HSBC independent quantitative survey of over 2,000 nationally representative Australians, and qualitative survey of over ten nationally representative Australians aged 18+ years older conducted by Colmar Brunton

ii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose one storey (72%) over two (28%)

iii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose no pool (66%) over a pool (34%)

iv When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose a garage over a spare bedroom (70%)

v When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose a walk-in shower (wet-room) (66%) over a bathtub (34%)

vi When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose Scandi interior design (63%) over industrial (37%)

vii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose high-tech amenities (61%) over subway tiles (39%)

viii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose large modern kitchen (79%) over live near popular cafes (21%)

ix When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose marble kitchen/bathrooms (61%) over period features (39%)

x 'The Great Australian Dream Home' – HSBC qualitative survey of ten nationally representative Australians aged 18+ years older conducted by Colmar Brunton

xi When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose a walk-in wardrobe (72%) over a butler's pantry (28%)

xii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose a BBQ (81%) over an outdoor pizza oven (19%)

xiii When options for an ideal home are selected from two potential choices – Australians would choose a Hills Hoist (57%) over balcony (43%)

xiv Average score of 2.7: To what extent are you guilty of purchasing extravagant, unnecessary or frivolous things for your house (0 = 'Not at all' and 10 = 'Very guilty')?

Read Australia’s Dream Home in 2018 (5-page PDF 510KB)