Residential suburbs of Melbourne

Albert Park, Middle Park, Port Melbourne

Only 3 km south east of the CBD this area, in the City of Port Philip, is extremely popular and one of Melbourne’s most expensive. Albert Park Lake is a popular leisure place for joggers, golfers, sailors and rowers and it is also home to the Australian Grand Prix. The foreshore attracts cyclists, roller bladers and joggers from early morning and is a wonderful place to watch the sun set. Restaurants and cafes are abundant and Albert Park Village and Bay Street Port Melbourne are lively and vibrant areas. Port Melbourne has many new apartment developments as well as smaller period cottages and townhouses. Albert Park has a mixture of period homes including Victorian terrace homes and workers’ cottages. Trams and light rail provide excellent transport options.

Armadale and Malvern
These suburbs in the City of Stonnington lie 9 km south east of the CBD and are extremely popular. The shopping along High Street and Glenferrie Road as well as Malvern Central attracts people from afar. Antique lovers will find plenty to interest them and Australian designers are well represented in the boutiques. There are many lovely parks and green spaces. The majority of the homes are Edwardian and often beautifully renovated. There are some apartments and townhouses available also. Trams and trains provide excellent transport options.

Ascot Vale, Kensington, Flemington
These suburbs situated in the cites of Melbourne and Moonee Valley lie 7 km north-west of Melbourne in an area that is particularly vibrant at the time of the Spring Racing Carnival when race-goers flock to Flemington Race Course. Parkland along the Maribyrnong River and Fairbairn Park is well used. Housing is varied with many period cottages lining the streets. Recently newer apartments and townhouses are also finding a place in this area. Trams and trains provide an excellent transport option.

Balwyn, Balwyn North
These suburbs, in the City of Whitehorse 10 km east of the CBD are very popular with families. Shopping areas at Westfield Shopping Town in Doncaster and Whitehorse Road are always busy. There is plenty of green space and the leafy streets provide cool places to walk in the summer. There are many period homes in the area and recently many new units and townhouses are being built also. Transport is by tram or bus as there are no trains in this area.

Beaumaris, Black Rock, Sandringham and Hampton
These suburbs in the City of Bayside between 14 and 22 km south east of the CBD are close to the sea and are very popular with families. There are plenty of opportunities for water-based activities and beautiful cliff top walks. Golfers can enjoy some of the best golf courses in Australia. Hampton and Sandringham have an abundance of period homes whereas Black Rock and Beaumaris have many more contemporary properties. and land sizes are more generous than the inner city suburbs. Sandringham and Hampton are well served by train and bus whereas Black Rock and Beaumaris have buses which meet each train.

Bentleigh and Bentleigh East
These suburbs in the City of Glen Eira lie 14 km south east of the CBD. They have lovely parks such as Alnutt Park, Victory Park, Halley Park, and Bentleigh Memorial Gardens. Centre Road, Bentleigh, is a strip shopping centre with a focus on fresh food, continental delis and cake shops and cafes. Transport is by train and bus.

Brighton and Brighton East
Only 12 km south east of the CBD in the City of Bayside this area is swamped in history and has one of the most vibrant shopping villages in Melbourne. The beaches, Brighton Baths and the bathing boxes are attractions which draw families. Galleries, antique shops and wonderful restaurants are also appealing. Many period homes line the leafy streets and the Golden Mile has many of Melbourne’s largest mansions. There are also newer townhouses and modern homes. Transport is by train from Brighton; tram from Brighton East and buses serve both suburbs.

Brunswick, Brunswick East, Brunswick West, Parkville and Princes Hill
These suburbs 4 km north of the CBD in the City of Moreland are particularly multicultural suburbs which enjoy the enormous parkland surrounding the zoo. Brunswick is located on relatively flat terrain and the streets are laid out in an approximate grid. The main thoroughfare is Sydney Road which is the main commercial centre and the shops and restaurants include those opened by families of migrants from Greece, Italy, Turkey and other Islamic countries as well as Africa and the Indian subcontinent. Many students, academics and medical professionals enjoy the proximity to the University and major hospitals. Many of the homes in this area are workers cottages but there are increasingly more townhouses and apartments. Transport is by train and tram.

Camberwell and Canterbury
These suburbs in the City of Boorondara lie 10 km east of the CBD and in a beautiful area of tree lined streets. The shopping area around Camberwell Junction is extremely vibrant with lovely restaurants, boutiques and Camberwell market. Today its Federation-style housing contrasts sharply with the classic Victorian homes of Hawthorn and the art deco properties of neighbouring Kew. In contrast to busy Camberwell, Maling Road in Canterbury exudes the charm of a village and attracts visitors from afar. Transport is by train and tram.

This suburb, in the City of Glen Eira, is 14 km south east of the CBD. It is a vibrant multicultural area with many permanent settlers from across the globe, and transient international students studying at the nearby Monash University campus. On Koornang Road alone there are restaurants and grocers offering Malaysian, Korean, Chinese, Italian, Lebanese, Thai, Japanese, Indian, Armenian, and Russian foods as well as the Rosstown Hotel. Carnegie is home to the Outdoor Caulfield Swim Centre. Transport is by train and tram.

Caulfield and Caulfield North
These suburbs in the city of Glen Eira lie 11 km south east of the CBD. Caulfield Park is a large Victorian garden that features a decorative lake and playing fields.. Caulfield Racecourse is also a draw card in the Racing Carnival. This area is largely settled by the Jewish community and this is apparent in the many restaurants and delicatessens. Many of the houses in this area are older style but there are also many low rise apartment blocks. Transport is excellent by train and tram.

The old waterside Docklands site in Melbourne’s immediate west is a huge and complex urban renewal project located on land adjacent to Southern Cross railway station, the central city and industrial areas. Docklands offers a range of entertainment, marinas, parks, public artworks, waterfront restaurants and shops, residential, research, education, technology, and business activities. The area is mainly residential with many lovely apartments with sensational water views. Transport is by tram and riverboat.

Doncaster and Templestowe
These suburbs in the city of Manningham lie 15 km north east of Melbourne. It is a hilly area close to the Doncaster Shopping Centre and has many lovely parks. This area is popular with expatriates who prefer more contemporary homes on larger allotments; It also has a number of townhouses and units. Transport is by bus.

East Melbourne
East Melbourne is an elegant suburb within easy walking distance of the CBD. There are many historic buildings such as the Houses of Parliament, City of Melbourne Synagogue, St Patrick’s Cathedral and the Treasury Building. There are beautiful parks and gardens as well as sporting venues such as the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne Park and Olympic Park. Accommodation includes some beautiful old terrace homes and there are also new apartment blocks that have proved very popular. Transport is by tram.

This suburb in the City of Glen Eira is 10 km south-east of the CBD. It is an area which enjoys proximity to the beach, beautiful parks and the vibrant shopping area of Glenhuntly Road. There are many Jewish specialty shops in the area. Elsternwick has many large older homes and in recent times townhouses are also becoming more prevalent. Transport is by train and tram.

This suburb in the city of Banyule is situated 24 km north-east of Melbourne. It is a pretty semi-rural area which is home to many galleries. Montsalvat is an artists colony which is open to the public. Beautiful parks and walking tracks are popular with families. The majority of homes were built in the 1960s but there are also many mud brick homes that attract attention. Transport is by train and there are also buses that service the area.

Essendon and Moonee Ponds
These suburbs in the city of Moonee Valley are situated 7-10 km north-west of Melbourne. The area boasts some beautiful parks and a race course. The shopping area at Puckle Street is lively and cosmopolitan. The area has many period homes but there are also some newer townhouses and low rise apartments. Transport is by train and tram.

Fairfield and Alphington
Fairfield and Alphington in the cities of Yarra and Darebin lie 8 km north east of the CBD are predominantly residential, with a small north-eastern pocket remaining a light industrial area. This area is situated on the fringes of Melbourne's popular and much-revived 'inner city' so gentrification has been strong, and property prices are high. The Yarra River and surrounding parkland,, along with the popular Fairfield Boathouse are popular with families. Commercial activity is focused on the shopping strip on Station Street and Wingrove Street, opposite Fairfield railway station. Fairfield's commercial outlets have prospered in recent years, with a recent influx of cafes, bars and specialist shops to Station Street. Many varieties of homes are available in this area but there are many cream brick veneer 1960s house and units. Transport is by train and tram.

Fitzroy, Fitzroy North, Carlton
These inner city suburbs within easy walking distance of the city are trendy, arty areas with excellent galleries and restaurants. The area is very cosmopolitan with Lygon Street known as Little Italy housing some wonderful restaurants. Beautiful gardens surround these areas and shopping is enticing. Transport is by tram.

Gardenvale in the City of Glen Eira lies 12 km south east of the CBD. At just 0.3 km˛, it is the smallest suburb in metropolitan Melbourne by land area. It is close to the sea and enjoys the parks and shopping areas of Brighton.

Glenhuntly in the City of Glen Eira lies 13 km south east of the CBD. It is a small suburb, approximately 1 km from North to South and 800 metres East to West at its widest point. It has a mixture of housing from art deco homes through to modern townhouses. Transport is by train.

Hawthorn, Hawthorn East, Kew and Kew East
This area, which is part of the City of Boroondara is 8 km from the CBD is one of the most sought after areas of Melbourne. Victorian and art deco homes grace tree-lined streets. There is abundant parkland in the suburb including Yarra Bend and Studley parks Town Planners were not constrained by the smaller lot allocations found just to the west over the Yarra and allotments in Kew and Hawthorn were developed usually with much greater size and fronted wide, leafy boulevards. As a consequence, many of these residences now attract some of the highest residential resale values in Melbourne. In many cases, the large allotments have been subsequently redeveloped into townhouses or duplexes. One of the more sought-after of these areas is the Sackville Houses and apartments within this ward rarely come onto the market. Transport is by tram from Kew and Kew East while Hawthorn has a railway station.

This suburb in the city of Banyule lies 11 km north east of the CBD. It has a charm and character of yesteryear particularly in the renowned Boulevard which overlooks the public golf course and the Yarra Valley. Many 1930’s homes with pretty gardens sit in tree lined streets. East Ivanhoe grew in the 1960s and so has many brick veneer homes. Transport is by train and bus.

Malvern East
This suburb in the City of Stonnington lies 13 km from the CBD and spreads towards Chadstone Shopping Centre. Malvern East has a number of popular public open spaces, the most notable of which are Hedgeley Dene Gardens, Central Park and the Urban Forest Reserve. The area has many lovely art deco homes but there are also many newer homes and townhouses available. Transport is by train and tram.

This suburb in the City of Maribrynong is situated 10 km west of Melbourne. The area enjoys many beautiful parks and riverside paths popular with anglers and cyclists. The Highpoint Shopping Centre provides excellent shopping facilities. Many of the homes in this area are post war buildings but there are also many newer townhouses. Transport is by tram and bus.

McKinnon in the City of Glen Eira is 15 km south east of the CBD. It contains various parks such as Wattle Grove Park and Allnutt Park. McKinnon expanded in the early 1900s due to the railway station being built. McKinnon Road features McKinnon's main shopping strip. The property in McKinnon ranges from art deco red brick classic homes to 1960s brick veneer houses and units. Transport is by train.

This suburb in the City of Glen Eira lies 15 km south east of the CBD. It is located in the south east of Melbourne. Murrumbeena is quite small, and is generally known for its parklands. It has a small shopping strip but most shoppers use Chadstone Shopping Centre. Most of the houses in this area are Federation or art deco although there are newer townhouses available. Transport is by train and tram.

Ormond in the City of Glen Eira is situated 11 km south east of the CBD. Bay views are possible from some of the elevated homes in the south-west corner of the suburb, with the bay itself being about 4 km away. Ormond enjoys lovely parks, including E.E Gunn Reserve, home to the Ormond Football and Cricket Club. The Ormond shopping strip is located primarily on North Road, but nearby shopping strips in Carnegie and Bentleigh are more popular. Ormond is home to an impressive array of restaurants however, with upwards of 10 different cuisine styles on offer reflecting the multiculturalism found in the suburb. The original housing stock of Ormond was generally constructed between 1890 and 1950.. Californian bungalows are common, and many "dog box" cream brick apartment buildings were constructed in the 1960's. Transport is by train.

Northcote, Thornbury, Westgarth
These suburbs, in the City of Darebin, form a residential area 8 km north-north-east of Melbourne close to Merri Creek and on the east Darebin Creek. Westgarth (south of Northcote) is populated with cafes, bars, small fashion boutiques, and restaurants. High Street north of Ruckers Hill is a mix of furniture outlets, bars and art galleries. Large, expensive houses were built throughout the 1850s. Throughout the 1950s the area became home to a large number of Italian and Greek migrants. By the 1980s, gentrification of Fitzroy and Fitzroy North had moved many of the artistic and activist communities north into Northcote and Thornbury. The area is a mixture of homes, many reflecting the multicultural nature of the area. There are many 1960s brick veneer homes and units. Transport is by train and tram.

Prahran in the City of Stonnington is situated 6 km south east of the CBD. Like many suburbs of inner Melbourne, the population is more ethnically and socially diverse than in outer suburban areas. Chapel Street is the main focus for the fashion conscious while Greville Street, once the centre of the Melbourne's hippie community, is still very trendy with cafes, bars, bookstores and music shops. In the 1960s the Victorian Government opened the Prahran housing commission estate attracting an influx of migrants, adding to the multicultural flavour of the area. Gentrification of the suburb began in the 1970s when much of the remaining old housing stock was being renovated and restored. During the 1990s, the population increased markedly, with demand for inner-city living fuelling a medium density housing boom. Prahran consists of mostly single storey Victorian and Edwardian terrace houses, with some larger double storey terraces closer to the main shopping strips. Prahran features many small gardens scattered throughout the suburb which are largely hidden. Grattan Gardens are off Greville Street on Grattan Street. The Princes Gardens are a small garden which features the "Chapel Off Chapel", an old church converted into a theatre. Victoria Gardens off High Street is a Victorian era garden with a main space consisting of a circular row of London plane trees The Orrong Romanis Park is the largest park in Prahran. Transport is by train and tram.

Richmond in the City of Yarra lies 3 km east of the CBD. It is a dynamic multicultural suburb with restaurants reflecting the influx of immigrants. Little Saigon along Victoria Street is as popular as the Greek restaurants along Swan Street and Bridge Road. Shopping is extremely good and bargains cam be found in the boutiques. There is also a large shopping centre at Victoria Gardens. Gentrification of the suburb since the early 1990s is responsible for an eclectic mix of expensively converted warehouse residences not far from the Victorian terrace houses. Parks are close by, as is the River Yarra. Transport is by train and tram.

South Yarra
South Yarra, situated in the City of Stonnington, is situated 5 km south east of the CBD. The name comes from the river which runs along the northern boundary and provides wonderful leisure time opportunity. The main shopping region of South Yarra runs along Toorak Road and Chapel Street which afford trendy shopping opportunities, restaurants, nightclubs and cafe culture. South Yarra is also home to some of Melbourne's most prestigious residential addresses. The area was popular with wealthy citizens of Melbourne in the 1850s as a suburban retreat from the town. Several large houses were built and, it maintained its upper-class reputation into the post-Second World War period. During the 1920s and 1930s many of the large gardens of the older mansions were subdivided and blocks of flats became a feature of the area especially around Park Street.. Flat development continued into the 1960s and 1970s and today South Yarra is one of the most densely populated suburbs in Melbourne. South Yarra has several local attractions including Chapel Street: the famous street is extremely fashionable. A major landmark is the Jam Factory where, old factories have been converted into up market shopping centre and cinemas. Prahran Market is also one of Melbourne's most popular and historic fresh produce markets. Toorak Road, is a popular strip that contains a wide range of shops. Several large mansions exist in South Yarra. Heritage registered houses include Como House, one of Melbourne's earliest mansions while many others have been lovingly restored or operate as guest houses. South Yarra's parks and gardens include part of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Fawkner Park and smaller gardens such as the former Greville Botanic Gardens and Como Gardens. Transport is by tram and train.

South Melbourne
South Melbourne, in the City of Port Philip, lies 3 km from the CBD. It is one of Melbourne’s oldest suburbs with some stunning buildings from earlier times. In 1960s the Victorian Housing Commission erected several high-rise public housing towers bringing injection many migrants and adding to the multicultural flavour of the area. The 1980s saw gentrification of the area as terrace homes were restored and renovated and a new middle class moved in. As a result of the development of Southbank in the 1990s, Clarendon Street regained popularity. Albert Park and the beach close by are popular leisure areas. Transport is by tram.

St Kilda and St Kilda East
These suburbs, in the city of Port Philip, lie 5 km south of the CBD. St Kilda originated as a seaside resort when many palatial mansions were constructed. Subsequently the area became Melbourne's red-light district, with many of the large mansions converted into low-cost rooming houses. The area of St Kilda East was not so wealthy. St Kilda became a centre for Melbourne's growing Jewish community in the 1930s and an Orthodox community developed with a number of synagogues and schools. In recent decades, however, the centre of Melbourne's Jewish community has moved eastwards to Caulfield. There are still Jewish neighbourhoods in East St Kilda, mainly of older and more Orthodox people and recent Jewish immigrants from the former Soviet Union. Today St Kilda is an area of sharp social contrast, with many homeless and other disadvantaged people living among the wealthy and fashionable who crowd its shops and cafes. There are many apartments in the area as well as small period homes and art deco buildings. Transport is by light rail and tram.

Toorak in the City of Stonnington, lies 7 km south east of the CBD. It is one of the wealthiest suburb’s in Melbourne as is evident in the opulent mansions gracing the tree-lined streets. Toorak Village is a magnet for the fashion conscious. As well as substantial family homes the area also has many apartment blocks especially along Toorak Road. Parks, such as Como Park, offer green space and the river is not far away. Transport is by train and tram.

Williamstown in the City of Hobson Bay is 13 km west of the CBD. Williamstown has the appearance of a sleepy fishing village but is a hive of activity, especially at weekends. Williamstown has a vibrant cafe and restaurant scene especially around at Nelson Place. Tastes to be savoured include everything from Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Italian, Mediterranean, Pub Bistro, and cheap eats. History abounds with historic ships and the historic buildings along the foreshore. Despite being one of the Melbourne's oldest suburbs, holding historical value, Williamstown is fast becoming one of Melbourne’s trendiest suburbs. Almost every type of architecture is available here from Victorian cottages through to modern townhouses and apartments. Transport is by train.

How to purchase a property in Melbourne, Victoria
Research is the key. Check the suburbs and what they offer first, decide on your preferred suburbs, research what other homes in the area have been achieving at sale and therefore what you are likely to need to pay. Draw up a chart of recent sales indicating special features, land size, direction of property, local transport, shops, school zone and what the kinds of homes in that street. On choosing a property you particularly like you should think of engaging a professional valuer who will research whether there is anything in planning which would reduce the value of your property as well as comparing data to indicate the value of the property. A registered valuer will be found on the database of the the Valuers Registration Board or the Australian Property Institute. Also consider a building inspection, pest inspection and for an apartment a strata records inspection.
You will need to arrange the necessary finance. You should allow for 10% of the purchase price for the deposit which will be paid immediately after the auction or on exchange of contracts for private sale.
Auction is very popular in Victoria although increasingly vendors are turning to private sale. The auction process a fair one as everyone can see how the bidding is going but remember there is no cooling off period as there is for a purchase through private treaty. Once you have won the auction you can not then find a reason for not proceeding: you must proceed. Before the auction ask the agent for the contract of sale and ask a solicitor to check this for you . As the commencement of the auction, the auctioneer will read the terms of the auction. The auctioneer may offer a vendor bid which is usually below the reserve price and may begin or improve the auction. If the auction fails to reach the reserve price yet you were the highest bidder you will then be able to negotiate with the agent. Whether you win the auction or negotiate afterwards you will be asked to provide a deposit which can be paid by bank cheque or personal cheque . The deposit will be 10%.
If you are choosing a home which is to be sold by private sale then there is a different process. If you make an offer you will be asked to pay a part deposit and sign a contract note. The deposit is refunded if the vendors do not accept your offer. If accepted a contract of sale is drawn up and becomes a legally binding document when both you and the vendors sign the contract. You must then pay your deposit of 10% and you will then have a five day cooling off period but you if you change your mind about buying the property then you will need to pay the vendor 0.25% of the sale price.
Settlement day is usually between 30 and 120 days later and this is when you will pay everything in full. You will need to insure your property from this date.

Renting properties in Melbourne, Victoria

Unfurnished apartments
You would expect unfurnished apartments to have an oven, a cooking range (gas or electric), heating although this may be very basic in the cheaper apartments, bathroom with a shower but not necessarily a bath. Usually the apartments will have carpet or polished boards, curtains or blinds, light fittings, kitchen cupboards and benches and the more expensive apartments may have a dishwasher, car space or a garage. What also can make apartments more expensive is whether the apartment has a balcony, a view, how high up in the building it is, whether there is a gym and how good the location is especially taking into account proximity to transport.
In general there are few good one bedroom unfurnished apartments. There are also very few luxury unfurnished apartments available. Good rental accommodation in Melbourne is relatively hard to find as there is considerable demand.
Furnished two bedroom apartments are relatively hard to source. Again, rental accommodation is relatively expensive and the rental rates are going up at twice the inflation rate.

Furnished apartments
There is a difference between furnished and Fully Furnished. Furnished properties may have only the bare necessities: oven, cooking range (gas or electric), fridge, washing machine, bed, sofa, table and chairs. A fully furnished property would also have cutlery, cooking utensils, bed linen, towels and all the items that you would expect to find in a serviced apartment. You would not need to buy anything in addition in order to live in the apartment and could come with only your suitcase.

Minimum lease term The minimum time for which a furnished apartment is given for lease is three months but this is relatively rare. More acceptable is a six month lease. The minimum time that an unfurnished property is given for lease is six months but this also is highly unusual and such a lease term on application could severely reduce the chances of that application being accepted. The usual practice is to require you to sign a 12 month lease. Cost incurred in case of lease breakage If your lease agreement has not expired and you need to break your lease then you will be liable for the rent until a new tenant is found. You may also be liable for a reletting fee which is usually one or two weeks rent as well as advertising costs; you should check how the agent intends advertising the property and what costs will be incurred. It is the responsibility of the landlord to take reasonable action to relet the vacant property.

Brokerage Tenants do not pay brokerage in Victoria.

Additional monthly maintenance charges
There are no additional monthly maintenance fees to be paid by the tenant. The landlord is responsible for rates and building insurance.

Advance payment for a rental property
The standard amount payable to secure a rental property is one calendar month’s rent and a bond which is usually the equivalent of one calendar month’s rent for an unfurnished property and can be around six weeks rent for a furnished property. The bond is a security against damage and is normally the equivalent of one calendar month’s rent.

When rent is payable
Rent is payable monthly.

The lease
You will be given two copies of the lease to sign. This explains the terms on which you are renting the property, the rent you must pay and the period of tenancy. You will also be given a handbook which explains you rights as a tenant.

Condition report
When you move into your property you will be given a condition report in duplicate. Check this carefully and then sign both copies, keeping one for yourself and one should be returned to the agent or landlord within three working days. This will be the comparison which forms the basis for your refund of bond at the end of the tenancy.

Types of housing

Single Fronted Victorian Cottage Two Storey Victorian Terrace Double Fronted Victorian
Californian Bungalow 1940’s Substantial Home Brick Veneer Home
Typical Apartment Block Modern Home Modern Apartment Block

Use the map by clicking on the buttons buttonmarking the various City Councils of Melbourne. You will then be given information about the various suburbs and facilities, local schools and transport. This should help you to pinpoint the areas you may want to focus on. If the maps dont work in your browser click here
Map showing the areas of Melbourne and Suburbs, Australia Kingston Bayside Monash Glen Eira Stonnington Whitehorse Manningham Boroondara Yarra Port Phillip Melbourne Moonee Valley Hobsons Bay Darebin Banyule Moreland

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