As Australia’s strongest property market throughout 2021-22, Brisbane has benefitted from significant internal migration and strong demand for its lifestyle suburbs.

Many parents and savvy investors have crowded the Brisbane property market looking for affordable lifestyle suburbs in some of the most sought-after school zones.

And did you know how much a school catchment area can influence a property’s value?

Many people are willing to pay a premium to be located within some primary and secondary school zones, and house prices in these areas are reaping the reward.

And even as growth slowed in other parts of Australia, Brisbane’s housing market continued to perform strongly in the first half of 2022.

Even though prices have now begun to fall from their peak, the market has done so with a significant lag from the price drops across the rest of Australia.

And unlike in Sydney and Melbourne, prices are still far higher across the city than just 12 months ago.

It’s unsurprising then that, in Brisbane, competition for places in preferred school zones has put upwards pressure on prices.

And with Brisbane’s elite private schools charging up to $28,230 per year, per child, it’s understandable that top-performing public schools are in high demand.

In fact, Domain Group’s latest 2023 School Zones Report shows that nine of the top 10 secondary schools and seven of the top 10 primary schools with the highest annual growth across the combined capitals are located in Brisbane.

This is an impressive feat considering the recent decline in the property market but emphasises the strong surge in house prices during the upswing, the report said.

school zone

Brisbane’s house prices have risen across most school catchments analysed, up in 99% of primary and all secondary schools.

And while the top school catchments are located across the inner, middle, and outer suburbs with a variety of price points but more affordable outer locations dominate the list.

In fact, 8 out of 10 high school zones and 6 out of the 10 primary school zones listed have a median house price lower than Brisbane’s current $786,198 house price average.

The report also reveals that a larger proportion of primary school catchments have outpaced their respective suburbs’ performance, at 54% compared to 47% of secondary schools.

Not only that but around 90% of primary school and 86% of secondary school catchments have recorded up to 10% additional annual growth above their respective suburbs.

Here are the high school and primary school catchment areas which have come out on top for Melbourne.


Brisbane’s suburbs for high schools

The largest increase in median house prices over the 12 months to July 2021 was seen in the catchment area of Tamborine Mountain State High School around 80km south of Brisbane.

Prices in the area shot up a huge 37.9% to give a new median of $910,000.

Close behind with a 32.6% increase to a $570,000 median were houses in the catchment area of Beaudesert State High School.

Meanwhile, houses in the Woodridge State High School catchment area climbed 32.4% to a new median price of $450,000, putting it in third place on the top 10 list.

Suburb School Name Median Property Price YoY
1 Tamborine Mountain Tamborine Mountain State High School $910k 37.90% ↑
2 Beaudesert Beaudesert State High School $570k 32.60% ↑
3 Woodridge Woodridge State High School $450k 32.40% ↑
4 Beenleigh Beenleigh State High School $496k 28.80% ↑
5 Marsden Marsden State High School $550k 27.90% ↑
6 Browns Plains Browns Plains State High School $620k 27.80% ↑
7 Morayfield Morayfield State High School $580k 27.80% ↑
8 Springfield Central Springfield Central State High School $670k 27.60% ↑
9 Burpengary Burpengary State Secondary College $740k 27.60% ↑
10 Balmoral Balmoral State High School $1.26M 27.30% ↑

Brisbane’s suburbs for primary schools

For Brisbane’s primary schools, the data reveals that houses located in the catchment area of Walloon State School experienced the biggest price increase, of a huge 43.9% over the 12 months to July 2022.

The new median price for the suburb is $626,000.

In second place, with a higher median house price of $950,000, is the catchment area surrounding Canungra State School.

This school zone saw house prices jump 42.9% over the period.

With a house price hike of 35.2% to $507,000, the catchment area for Carole Park State School southwest of Brisbane came a very close third in this year’s top 10 list.

Suburb School Name Median Property Price YoY
1 Walloon Walloon State School $626k 43.90% ↑
2 Canungra Canungra State School $950k 42.90% ↑
3 Wacol Carole Park State School $507k 35.20% ↑
4 Sadliers Crossing Blair State School $535k 35.00% ↑
5 Acacia Ridge Acacia Ridge State School $650k 34.70% ↑
6 Lutwyche Wooloowin State School $1.385M 34.50% ↑
7 Park Ridge Park Ridge State School $932k 34.10% ↑
8 Seven Hills Seven Hills State School $1.36M 33.90% ↑
9 Logan Reserve Logan Reserve State School $612k 32.90% ↑
10 Gleneagle Gleneagle State School $655k 32.30% ↑

Location, location, location… and investment grade

While the price increases in these growth areas might make for a tempting investment, they don’t necessarily make good investment sense.

And they aren’t necessarily the suburbs I would recommend investing in.

At Metropole, we always advise on the importance of investment-grade properties and locations, rather than chasing a hotspot or growth area.

But even before looking for the right location, make sure you have a Strategic Property Plan to steer you through the upcoming challenging times our property markets will encounter.

Because aside from remembering that you should focus your efforts on investment-grade properties and locations, you also need to remember that property investing is a process, not an event.

That means that things have to be done in the right order – and selecting the location and the right property in that location comes right at the end of the process.

The fact is, the property you will eventually buy will be the result of a sequence of questions you will need to ask and answer and a series of decisions you’ll need to make before you even start looking at locations.

About Brett Warren
Brett Warren is Director of Metropole Properties Brisbane and uses his two decades of property investment experience to advise clients how to grow, protect and pass on their build their wealth through property.