Independent and FREE - 2021 Best Online Publication

Report reveals more city-slickers heading our way

Independent and FREE – 2021 Best Online Publication (Qld Country Press)

Report reveals more city-slickers heading our way

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Report reveals new wave of city-slickers moving to the Sunshine Coast

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The Sunshine Coast is in the top three destinations for people moving away from the cities to regional Queensland and regional NSW, the recently published Regional Movers Index reports.

The Coast has recorded its largest growth in migration from capital cities compared with the other four top LGAs.

“Migration to the Sunshine Coast grew by 24 per cent in the March 2021 quarter, and by 14 per cent over the year,” the report states.

The top five LGAs are the Gold Coast (11%), the Sunshine Coast (6%), Greater Geelong (4%), Wollongong (3%) and Newcastle (2%).

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The Regional Movers Index report, prepared by the Regional Institute of Australia and the Commonwealth Bank,  shows that the movement of people out of the capital cities in the June 2020 quarter declined by 11 per cent.

“Since then, the trend has been a growing outflow of people from capital cities to regional areas,” the report states.

Between the March 2020 quarter and the March 2021 quarter 7 per cent more people have moved making it the highest population movement since 2018.

Sydney (49.5%) and Melbourne (46.4%) and are providing the bulk of movers.

Importantly, the report finds there is an increase in net migration into regional areas as regional residents are remaining in place.

“These dynamics have driven the net regional migration index in the latest quarter to be 66 per cent higher than a year earlier,” the report concludes.


As Australians try to come to terms with restricted lifestyle choices as a result of the nation-wide Covid-19 lockdowns, the situation may prove the stick that is needed to get more city dwellers moving out to regional areas.

Dr Prudence Millear

University of the Sunshine Coast Lecturer in Psychology Dr Prudence Millear, who is currently researching why people are moving to the Coast, expects the Coast inflow numbers will continue upwards.

“If you are going to be stuck in a shoebox you might as well be stuck in shoebox next to the Coast,” she says.

“It’s (the current shutdowns) likely to make the Coast more attractive although I think what is going to balance that is the lack of housing stock.”

Still, for people stuck in cold Melbourne or Sydney she says the idea of living in Queensland’s glorious winter weather and Coast lifestyle may seem like the perfect choice.